By Samuel Ojo
To address the issues bedeviling economic development in Nigeria, the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration set up the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, the ERGP in April 2017.
To evaluate the performance of the ERGP thus far, the office of advancement of the University of Lagos in collaboration with the department of finance have presented a colloquium and the first annual lecture of the UBA professorial chair in finance, both focusing on economic development.
The event took place at the J.F Ade Ajayi auditorium where a paradigm shift to focus on the non-oil sector was advocated.
In the colloquium themed “AFTER THE ECONOMIC RECOVERY AND GROWTH PLAN: (ERGP) WHAT NEXT?”, a professor of economics, Professor Risikat Dauda examined the progress of the ERGP over the years as well as made recommendations.
Professor Risikat said, “the ERGP was set up to restore growth, invest in human capital development and build a globally competitive economy”.
Professor Dauda said that as at the first quarter of 2019, the set goals of the ERGP had not been met. She highlighted various factors that have challenged the attainment of the goals to include spiraling national debt, rampaging flood disaster, over exposure to china amongst others.
To ameliorate the situation, Professor Risikat Dauda recommended heavy investment in the agricultural value chain as according to her, that is one area where Nigeria has comparative advantage.
She said, “the critical area to focus on is the continuous development of strategies to promote agricultural, industrial and services sector as well as ways of ensuring fiscal sustainability. Greater attention must be given to policy initiatives that promote conducive business environments as this will enhance local production and ensure inclusive roles”.
Reacting to the presentation, Dr. Olalekan Obademi of the department of finance said that if the economy will receive a boost, the power sector must be revamped. In the first annual lecture titled “THE DYNAMIC STRUCTURE OF WORLD ECONOMY, FROM GLOBALIZATION TO SLOWBALIZATION; THE AFRICAN DILEMMA”. The UBA professorial chair appointee, Professor John Emeka Ezike said that slowbalization is the movement towards de-globalization,