Analysis On The Forthcoming President’s Launch Of The National Economic Reconstruction & Growth Plan, By Aliyu Abdullahi
From the inception of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration, the Administration came into power with a sound and modern economic plan that was put together by its Campaign Economic Team (Committee) which drew its major policies from the All Progressive Congress (APC)’s manifestos which was mainly to diversify from an oil sector Economy to a non Oil Economy (Agriculture and Solid Minerals Mining), most of which was based on assumptions of what was on ground both in terms of micro and macroeconomic level in the Country. Sooner the Administration comes to Power that they realize not all was well with their projections on the Country’s Economy, infact it was worst they could have imagined, and suddenly like a house of cards, the building rock of Nigeria’s Economy began to fall into pieces.
The price of Nigeria’s Mono Product Oil internationally crashed to an all time low combined with a much lower production output due to a renewed Niger Delta Militancy which saw a significant drop in the Country’s oil production output. A depleted External Reserve by the last Administration did not help matters one bit, the immediate resultant effect was a mounting pressure on the Foreign exchange which saw the Nation’s currency (Naira) continuous crashing against all measures taken by the Administration.
These factors necessitated a holistic review by the Administration on its Economic Plans, and hence for the National Economic Plan to come into place, the earlier Strategic Implementation Economic Plans must be broken into various sectors of the Economy for the comprehensive review and overall Strategy to come together. The Monetary and Fiscal Policy from the CBN with the responsibility of setting a monetary and fiscal policy that will align with the overall economic strategic direction of the Administration, an expansionary National Budget intended to stimulate an economic growth must now realign with the new National Economic Plan and that falls under the Ministry of National Budget and Planning. The overall goal of the Government’s economic policy was and is still the diversification of its Economy with a shift towards non-oil sectors such as Agriculture and Solid Minerals Mining, and the Key Actors come from other two different Ministries respectively.
Not forgetting the Federal system of Governance being practiced by Nigeria, and there comes the State Governors as Stakeholders of the Country’s Economy. They are also supposedly closer to the People and the host for implementation of most of the Economic Strategies, they must have their plans aligned with the Federal Government for any meaningful National Economy Policy to be implementable and successful.
Fortunately all these Stake Holders are Members of the National Economic Council, they too have realized earlier projections were wrongs especially when there is shift in some economic variables and have been working hard these past 15 Months or so to come up with the National Economic Reconstruction and Growth Plan. Two key words in the title of the Economic Plan need to be highlighted and explained further, “Reconstruction” this will entail some kind of major overhaul from what the Country used to head Economically, and “Growth”, this underscore the importance of having an all encompassing Economic Plan that will grow the Nation’s Economy within, a bottom to top approach and a sustainable one. Now for all these to happen, the various sectors and MDAs responsible must harmonize their economic strategic plans into a whole Document.
For a Country to have a sound National Economic Plan, it must have a short term, medium term and long term strategic plan. For now the Strategic Implementation Plan was used to produce the Medium Term Plan which is the Document that will be launched after consultation with the Private Sector Actors, the National Assembly and other key Stakeholders, the Medium Plan is supposed to tackle issues on Macroeconomic Level such as the Monetary and Fiscal Policy, Lowering Inflation Rate, Stable Exchange Rate, Stable Interest Rate, Strong Economic Growth, Competitive Private Sector, others will be Job Creation, Social Inclusion, Security and development of Human Capital.
For the reasons espoused above, there is need for all Stakeholders to offer their contributions where necessary, support and understanding of this tremendous work done by the Nation’s Economic Team under the leadership of the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo
Aliyu Abdullahi is a Legal Practitioner and a Policy Analyst