Despite the challenges facing the economy, the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) has expressed optimism that the economy will grow by 0.6 per cent this year.
The Chairman of the NESG, Mr. Kyari Bukar, stated this in a speech he presented at the 2016 annual general meeting of the group held in Lagos recently.
According to Bukar, there are few reasons to be hopeful about 2017.
“First, it is our hope that the current peace in the Niger Delta will be sustained so as to guarantee improvement in government revenue, which is crucial for payment of salaries and infrastructure development. We also hope that efforts to simplify and ease the business environment would yield positive outcomes following the inauguaration of the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC).
“In addition, the recent launch of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), which deserves commendation, is a bold step in the right direction. However, implementation of the plan is the key to getting the economy back on the path of economic growth and sustainable development,” he explained.
Furthermore, he pointed out that as stated in the NESG macroeconomic outlook for 2017, the belief is that any economic recovery achieved outside the scope of supporting the productive base of the economy would not be sustainable.
This, according to him, would only depict a typical case of postponing the “evil day.”
“Nigeria therefore must realise that looking inward remains the sustainable way to create jobs and enhance foreign exchange earnings through the increase in net exports,” he added.
On his part, the Chief Executive Officer of the NESG, Mr. ‘Laoye Jaiyeola, stressed the need for all stakeholders to support the federal government so as to achieve the objective of economic expansion.
“In particular, there is an important complementary role that the private sector needs to play in order for us to stem the tide of decline. Let me reiterate NESG’s commitment to remain at the fore of advocacy and intervention on all issues regarding the adoption of policies conducive for good governance and sustainable private sector-led economic development in 2017,” Jaiyeola said