VP. Osinbajo confers with economists on ‘quick economic recovery’

Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo met notable economists on Tuesday to discuss how Nigeria can be on a quick path to economic recovery.

Yemi-Osinbajo

At the meeting, Osinbajo said the challenges bedevilling the Nigerian economy are many, but the opportunities that abound are much more.

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Economic experts who attended the four-hour long special meeting were Bismarck Rewane, Bode Augusto, Akpan Ekpo, Ayo Teriba and Badayi Sani.

Udo Udoma, minister of budget and national planning, who addressed journalists after the meeting, said the meeting was for developing a new mid-term framework.

“We’ve just finished a special meeting of the economic management team, as you know, we are in the middle of consultations to develop the new mid-term economic framework, M-TEF,” he said.

He further disclosed that the meeting is “part of a comprehensive consultation process that we are embarking on to make sure that we reach out to a wide spectrum of Nigerians to get a feed back in terms of how best to make sure that we come out of this recession.”

Kemi Adeosun, minister of finance, had initially declared Nigeria to be in a technical recession, after the economic contracted by 0.36 percent in the first quarter of the year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.

In a statement by Laolu Akande, special assistant to the vice president on media and publicity, it was disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari’s economic management team (EMT) held a consultative forum with a team of notable economic and financial experts.

The meeting, presided over by the Osinbajo, deployed strategies and suggestions on how best to reflate the economy, bring it out of recession and promptly restore growth.

Osinbajo expressed the president’s determination to continuously consider and adopt policies that would boost business, increase employment and provide succour to the poor and disadvantaged.

“We will continue to engage with experts and other stakeholders so we can measure progress of the economic policies that have been put in place,” Osinbajo said.

“The challenges are many but the opportunities are much greater, we are clearly on the path to building an economy that will create jobs and ensure inclusive growth.”

According to Akande, the EMT meets weekly and also hold special consultations with members of the private sector and economic experts from time to time.

He said issues discussed at the consultative forum include the review of the new foreign exchange regime and its effect on the economy as well as the draft Medium Term Economic Framework for 2017-2019.

The EMT members and the experts made a plethora of suggestions on how to reflate the economy, especially through massive infrastructural spending with active private sector participation, ensure pro-people economic policies, increase the supply of dollars to the forex market among other issues.

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