GDP: Nigeria will shock IMF again-BMO

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The International Monetary Fund (IMF’s) conjecture on Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of -3.4 per cent for Nigeria in 2020, due to the ongoing economic turmoil engendered by the coronavirus pandemic, is a forecast filled with loopholes.

According to the Buhari Media Organisation (BMO), IMF projection does not take into account what President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is doing to ensure that the economy remains stable despite the prevailing circumstances.

In a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke in Abuja, BMO acknowledged the IMF position that the nation’s economy would experience challenges as a result of economic headwinds.
Thus development it said was the consequence of the coronavirus pandemic but added that the decline in our GDP would not be as much as the -3.4 percent predicted by the IMF.

“Given the Buharinomic policies, Nigeria’s economy under President Muhammadu Buhari had in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 consistently surpassed IMF’s negative projection on our nation’s GDP growth.

“Figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) show that our GDP contracted by – 1.58 per cent in 2016, compared to IMF’s GDP forecast of -1.8 per cent in the same year.

“The 2017 recorded a real annual growth rate of 0.83 percent higher by 2.42 percent than -1.58 percent recorded in 2016, compared to IMF growth forecast of 0.6 per cent in 2017.

“The real GDP grew at an annual growth rate of 1.91 per cent in 2018, an increase of 1.09 per cent than 0.82 per cent recorded in 2017, compared to IMF projection of 1.9 per cent in 2018.

“The nation’s GDP in 2019, according to NBS, indicate a real growth of 2.27 per cent, compared to 1.91 per cent in 2018, while the real GDP grew by 5.59% quarter on quarter, this also surpassed the IMF 2019 projection of 2.1 per cent”.

“As part of Nigeria’s efforts to contain the economic and social fallout from the COVID-19 crises, President Buhari has announced large fiscal stimulus packages.

“This is to further consolidate on the diversification of the economy which began in 2016 and facilitate a domestic-focused economy through home-grown solutions that are slowly but steadily taking our economy away from being foreign dependent.

“Inclusive of the brick and mortar interventions are the directives on prompt payment of civil servants’ salaries despite the lockdown.

“The social intervention to ensure Nigerians at the bottom of the economic ladder are not only provided for but are economically engaged.

“Other numerous measures by government include; review of the Federal Budget by N312billion, N500 billion federal intervention fund, N3.5 trillion CBN stimulus package for businesses and households.

“Others are; N15 trillion Infraco funding for roads and transportation. Also, N100billion is already set aside for financing pharmaceutical and medical-related companies”.

The pro- Buhari group noted that immediately after the threat of the pandemic was removed, the government was committed to employing 1,000 individuals from each of the 774 local governments across the country.

“Moreso, companies with an annual turnover of less than N25m have been exempted from paying tax and this represents more than 25 million registered companies in Nigeria.”

BMO said government had also reduced company Income Tax rate from 30 per cent to 20 per cent for medium-sized companies with a turnover between N25m and N100m.

“This will make more funds available for these companies to reinvest, grow, expand and create more jobs. These are creative ways of enabling businesses.

“The more the IMF predicts doom for Nigeria, the stronger the country gets. We’ve beaten IMF on more than three occasions in its recent predictions for Nigeria and we’ll do it again, given the short and long term Buharinomics,

“The IMF should know that President Muhammadu Buhari has taken a lot of pre-emptive steps to shield the country from any unexpected losses as he had done.”

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