Nigeria’s economic recovery growth plan seeks to restore growth, invest in human capital, and build a globally competitive economy, while also achieving a 7 per cent GDP growth by the year 2020.
Kalu Idika Kalu, Economist and former finance minister joins CNBC Africa to share his perspective on the government’s new economic recovery plan.
Here are excerpts:
On the problems with Nigeria’s economy:
“We’ve lost time. Virtually, the whole timing of this regime, we should really have gotten on to this very very quickly. We’re talking about a differential of over a hundred Naira. That’s absurd. That’s not done anywhere.
On the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan:
Looking at where we are, those are obvious macro targets. But what we need to underscore is that we need everybody working together. When I say everybody I mean the public sector, the private sector both domestic and external.
The plan sounds very nice but it doesn’t mean much in concrete terms until you take specific measures to elicit the right flow of resources.
I am not optimistic until I see a more professionally determined stance on some of these key issues.
The key issue is how we restore macro-economic stability because that is how we will be able to mobilise others without chasing anybody around.
On the $1 billion Eurobond:
For a country of Nigeria’s size a $1 billion Eurobond is really not very impressive. And we talked about it for over a year before we got there.
A $1 billion Eurobond at which we are more or less giving away at the price, and we say it’s over subscribed because we are giving away a lot of money raising one billion dollars and we should be raising a lot more money than what we have raised
We should begin to set tighter standards for ourselves.
On Nigeria’s exchange rate issues:
We’ve taken far too much time in stabilising our exchange rate. It’s inexcusable. It’s unheard of. It’s primitive management.”
People are not going to bring in lots of money when the pricing is so bifurcated. Right now there is an inexcusable bifurcation of the exchange rate. I hear we have about 6 different rates.
On what the government is doing right:
I think we’ve made some improvement on the security. I’m glad that we’re still continuing to seek help on security.