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Nigeria Economy Is Not A Mess, It Is Better Than Europe – Former British Council Director, Roberts

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Former British Council Director in Abuja, David Roberts has said that the Nigeria economy, which posted a GDP of 3.46 per cent cannot be referred to as a mess.

Roberts argued that Nigeria’s GDP is current better than Europe, which, according to him, is in recession.

He argued that it was not sustainable for a developing country like Nigeria to have a fuel subsidy policy.

He insisted that such funds ought to be diverted to the building of schools, hospitals, dams and other facilities.

The former director asserted that if the country judiciously utilises funds from the fuel subsidy it could attain her pre-2015 growth levels.

He said Nigeria should improve its regulatory institutions, including measures to counter corruption in the face of the current economic reality.

Speaking via a statement, Robert asserted that Nigeria has good policies in place and should take steps to build confidence in its capacity to regulate and renew efforts to identify and stamp out corrupt practices.

He said: “I lived and worked in Nigeria for many years as a British diplomat and one of the issues that most disturbed me was the sustenance of the fuel subsidy regime.

“Why would a country with a severe infrastructural deficit invest more money on a wasteful expenditure such as cheap petrol, instead of building schools, hospitals, dams and a national railway system? It is evident that it had to go.

“We joined the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund in saying as much to the Nigerian government. And at long last, it is gone.

“And everything we said that would happen after it goes is happening. Nigeria’s GDP is growing at 3.46 per cent while Europe is on the edge of recession.

“Her stock market just crossed 100,000 basis points, overtaking Argentina’s as the world’s most profitable stock market. And capital importation is up by 66 per cent.

“But that is not the best story. The cherry on the cake is that fuel importation into Nigeria is down 50 per cent. This means that Nigeria’s much-depleted federation account will rapidly be resuscitated.

“More funds will trickle down to the federating states from the Federal Government, and if well utilised, Nigeria could attain her pre-2015 growth levels.

“The future looks bright for Nigeria if her government can stay the course and resist the pressure to reverse the fuel subsidy removal and the flotation of the Naira.

“Nigeria’s economy is not a mess. There is nothing messy about 3.46 per cent growth. If attaining such growth was easy, then we would have that level of GDP development in Europe. But we don’t.”

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