Recession: Uwaleke Advocates Early Passage of 2021 Budget




Prof Uche Uwaleke

By Tony Obiechina, ABUJA

As Nigeria’s Economy slips into its worst recession since 1987, an economic expert has called for the early passage of the 2021 Appropriation Bill.

Reacting to the development, Prof Uche Uwaleke said this will go a long way in supporting the quick recovery of the economy.

According to the third quarter report released by the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS on Saturday, the Gross Domestic Product in real terms declined by -3.62% (year-on-year) in the third quarter of 2020.

The decline marks the beginning of a full-blown recession and second consecutive contraction from -6.10 per cent recorded in the previous quarter of this year.

According to the numbers contained in the report, oil GDP contracted by -13.89 per cent from -6.63 per cent in the second quarter of this year and 6.49 per cent in Q3 2019.

The country’s non-Oil GDP contracted -2.51 per cent from -6.05 per cent in Q2 2020 and 1.85 per cent in Q3 2019

Information & Communication under Services GDP grew 14.56 per cent compared to 16.52 per cent in Q2 2020 and 9.88 per cent in Q3 2019.

Services real GDP contracted by -5.49 per cent compared to -6.78 per cent in Q2 2020 and 1.87 per cent in Q3 2019.

Construction under Industry real GDP grew by -2.84 per cent compared to -31.77 per cent in Q2 2020 and 2.37 per cent in Q3 2019.

Industry real GDP contracted by -6.12 per cent compared to -12.05 per cent in Q2 2020 and 3.21 per cent in Q3 2019.

Telecoms real GDP grew by 17.36 per cent compared to 18.1 per cent in Q2 2020 and 11.3 per cent in Q3 2019.

Agricultural sector grew by 1.39 per cent compared to 1.58 per cent in Q2 2020 & 2.28 per cent in Q3 2019.

Uwaleke said the NBS Q3 real GDP number is a confirmation of the fact that in terms of economic contraction occasioned by COVID’19, Q2 2020 represents the worst experience for Nigeria.

According to him, when compared to a contraction of 6.10% in Q2 of this year, “it is actually an improvement reflective of the the ease in lockdowns and movement restrictions, the reduction in the cases of COVID’19 and the gradual return of investors confidence in the economy”.

The first professor of capital market further stated that “This improved confidence has also manifested in PMI readings and stock market performance”.

Uwaleke further stated, “This explains why, although still in the negative territory, sectors like Manufacturing, Trade, Transportation and Education recorded improvements over the Q2 numbers”.

He however, noted that the performance of the Agriculture sector in real terms which came in at 1.39% was disappointing.

“This corroborates the high food inflation rate now above 17% caused in large part by insecurity in many parts of the country.

“Yes, the economy has officially entered a recession but I see a quick V-shaped recovery as the effect of COVID’19 recedes and the impact of the interventions by the government and CBN begin to manifest including the implementation of the Economic Sustainability Plan.

“The early passage of the 2021 appropriation Bill will also go a long way in supporting economic recovery”, he added.

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