President Muhammadu Buhari says the present administration will keep a keen eye on food inflation in the New Year while giving a strong directive to the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN

President Muhammadu Buhari says the present administration will keep a keen eye on food inflation in the New Year while giving a strong directive to the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, not to give any money for food importation.

Stated this at the fifth regular meeting with the Presidential Economic Advisory Council held at the State House in Abuja

President Buhari directed that the CBN must not give money to import food. as Already about seven states are producing all the rice the country need.

In taking note of the strides made in agricultural production following the program of diversification from over reliance on oil instituted by his administration, President Buhari wondered where the country would have found itself by now in view of the devastating economic crisis brought about by COVID-19 if the country had not embraced agriculture.

The President emphasized the place of agriculture in the efforts to restore the economy but agreed that measures must be put in place to curtail inflation in the country:

He pointed out that they will continue to encourage Nigerians to go back to the land.

The meeting, which was for a review of, and reflections on the global and domestic economy in the outgoing year, was attended by the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, as well as Ministers of Finance and Humanitarian Affairs and agreed on a number of measures.

In specific terms, it noted the sharp deterioration in international economic environment and its impact on Nigeria’s continuing but fragile economic recovery; that Nigeria’s economic growth continues to be constrained by obvious challenges including infrastructural deficiencies and limited resources for government financing.

It emphasized the need to make the private sector of the economy the primary source of investment, rather than government.

The meeting reviewed progress towards structural reforms in response to the economic crises, including the institution of the Economic Sustainability Plan, the changes in electricity tariff and fuel pricing regime, the partial re-opening of the Land Borders, the movement towards unification of exchange rates and budgetary reforms through Finance Bill 2020 and 2021.

It agreed that, to prepare the country for the challenges ahead, it is imperative to ensure Macro-economic stability, create certainty and re-build investor confidence in the economy. It emphasized the need to deepen structural reforms initiated by the administration as a basis for stimulating investments from domestic and international sources with a view to raising productivity in key sectors of the economy.

BELLO WAKILI

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