Nigeria’s fourth fast growing economy, says World Bank
Nigeria’s economy is the fourth fastest growing worldwide, a World Bank
official, Richard Sandock, has said.
He listed other countries that recorded significant growth in their economies
to include the BRIC countries – Brazil, Russia, India China,
Speaking at the Seventh National Conference on Investment in Abuja at the
weekend, Sandock said: “Nigeria has slowly been coming up and has finally
taken over from Russia and South Africa. “
Nigeria had recorded a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of 10.3 per
cent, 10.6 per cent, 5.4 per cent, 6.2 per cent, 7 per cent, 6 per cent, 7 per cent
and 7.4 per cent in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 . As
the second quarter of 2011, the country’s economy had grown by 7.72 per cent
and is projected to hit 7.98 per cent by the end of the year.
The World Bank official noted that all sectors of the economy contributed to
the growth, adding that in spite of the growth, Nigeria is still facing serious
crisis in the labour market.
“In spite of the huge growth Nigeria is making, the labour market is still
very choked up, as about four million Nigerians are jobless.” Though
there are changes in Nigeria, most times, it is not about incentives, but the
system of the government. “The system should be there for every kind of
change. Investors need stability and predictability, meaning in 10 years, their
investment will be as protected as the day they came into that country,” he
Sandock, said, all the government needs is to ensure that the environment is
conducive and safe for business to thrive. These days, it is all about the Public-
Private Partnership (PPP), let investors do their thing, that is most important
in any growing economy, he added.
Two leading experts – Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC) and researchers at
Standard Chartered Bank, had earlier the year predicted that the Nigerian
economy would overtake that of South Africa.
Some economies of the biggest seven emerging countries (China, India, Brazil,
Russia, Indonesia, Mexico and Turkey – the E7), as well as South Africa,
Nigeria, Argentina, Saudi Arabia and Vietnam, will by that time be bigger than
those of the G7 (the US, Japan, Germany, Britain, France, Italy and Canada),
according to the report published on the website of Fin24.
The World in 2050 report, forecast that Nigeria and Vietnam will replace
South Africa and Australia’s positions on the list of the 20 biggest economies
in the world simply because their economies will show faster growth. Also,
analyst at Standard Chartered said Nigeria’s GDP would overtake South
Africa’s by 2015.
Speaking in Lagos, Regional Head of Research, Africa Global Research,
Standard Chartered Bank, Razia Khan, had also forecast that by 2015, Nigeria
would be the fourth most populous country in the world..
South Africa, which is currently the largest economy in Africa, is eager for
elevation to the coveted BRIC status of emerging markets, but investors say
Nigeria is a more probable African contender, even if promotion for either is
some way off.
Khan however, maintained that for these projections to be attained, Nigeria
needs a lot of structural growth.
She also said the planned removal of fuel subsidy by the federal government
would help correct a lot of distortions in the Nigerian economy.