Despite recession Nigeria remains biggest economy in Africa-IMF

Hauwa Noroh Ali. Abuja

 

A new report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected Nigeria as Africa’s biggest economy, in spite of its current challenges.

Nigeria is placed ahead of South Africa and Egypt which are second and third respectively

Recall that in August 2016, Nigeria was reported to have lost its spot as Africa’s biggest economy to South Africa, following the recalculation of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

“A recalculation using current exchange rates put South Africa on top because the rand has strengthened against the dollar,” IMF had said in August.

Adding that “Based on gross domestic product at the end of 2015 published by the International Monetary Fund, the size of South Africa’s economy is $301 billion at the rand’s current exchange rate, while Nigeria’s GDP is $296 billion,”

But the IMF’s World Economic Outlook for October, puts Nigeria’s GDP at 415.08 billion dollars, from 493.83 billion dollars in 2015, while South Africa’s GDP was put at 280.36 billion dollars, from 314.73 billion dollars in 2015.

According to the report, Egypt’s 2016 data is not available, but its 2015 size remained at 330.159 dollars while that of Algeria, one of the largest economies on the continent, is put at 168.318 billion dollars.

The United States, China and Japan maintain their spots as the largest economies in the world, ahead of Germany, United Kingdom and France.

According to a review in September, the current economic recession will outlast 2016, with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contraction of 1.7 per cent.

The IMF had predicted that Nigeria’s economy would grow away from a recession in 2017.

The country last witnessed a recession, for less than a year, in 1991, and experienced a prolonged one that started in 1982 and lasted until 1984.

President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has so far disbursed over N700 billion in capital expenditure this year, part of a record N6.06 trillion (30 billion dollars) budget for 2016