‘Recession exit, sign of growth’
Mr Muda Yusuf, the Director-General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), says the country’s exit from recession is a signal that the country is growing.
Yusuf said in an interview with journalists on Tuesday in Lagos that the development would change the perception of foreign investors on the Nigerian economy.
The director-general called for policies that would truly align the country for sustainability of the growth.
Newsmen report that the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its report said that the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 0.55 per cent in the second quarter of 2017.
It said the growth was an indication of country coming out of recession after five consecutive quarters of contraction since first quarter 2016.
Yusuf however noted that the growth in the GDP could not on its own lead to direct impact on citizens.
He said that this was due to the impact that still inflation had on goods and services coupled with the fact that salaries had not been increased.
Yusuf therefore called for policy that would make people to feel the positive impact of the growth beyond the technical growth of moving out of recession.
“It is very good that we have a situation where we are out of recession. It is one thing to be out of recession and another thing for both the investors and citizens to feel the impact.
“We need to look beyond getting out of recession and take into consideration other important factors that could impact on the private sector performance and on the welfare on the people.
“This is because the GDP numbers on its own will not bring about this kind of impact.”
Yusuf said that the government also needed to address investment environment issues such as power, transportation, cost of funds, foreign exchange management, tax and trade policies.
Yusuf added that those policies needed to be truly aligned and be reviewed to ensure the sustainability of the recovery the nation was now experiencing.
He said that there was also an urgent need to address the situation of high cost of goods and services since there had not been increase in incomes to cushion the effect on the citizens.
“For individuals, we need to look at what will improve the citizens’ welfare because the GDP on its own can not bring about the improvement and may not directly impact on the people.
“It is important that the government looks at policies that can directly impact on the welfare of citizens, especially on the cost of food, health care, transportation and education.
“So, beyond the technical exist from recession, we have to look at policies such the foreign exchange policy, interest rate policy, trade policy, investment policy and tax policy.
“We need to get all these right to ensure we sustain the current exit,” the LCCI boss said.
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