An economist and Chief Executive Officer of Financial Derivatives Company Limited, Bismarck Rewane, says Nigeria needs to attract both domestic and international capital to achieve a Gross Domestic Product level of $1.5t by 2030 when the country’s population would be 250 million.
Rewane noted that this will lead to an accelerated, sustainable and inclusive growth for the country.
Nigeria has the largest GDP in Africa with $446.543bn growth.
The economist, who is also a member of the Nigerian Economic Advisory Council, spoke at a public lecture to mark the 64th birthday of Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo in Abuja on Monday.
The lecture titled: “Building the Future of Nigeria through Enterprise and Innovation,” was organised by a Pan-Nigerian coalition, Building the Future Forum (BTFF), in Osinbajo’s honour .
He said that Nigeria needed to grow its economy at seven to eight percent a year for the next five to 10 years based on an investment-led strategy.
Rewane warned that if the country fails to do so, the problems of multi-dimensional poverty, debt, and insecurity may very soon lead to dire consequences.
He said: “We have our work cut out for us and if we are going to achieve accelerated, sustainable and inclusive growth, we need to attract domestic and international capital with its attendant investment multiplier to achieve a GDP level of $1.5trn by 2030 when our population could be 250mn or more.
“We need to grow the economy at least at 7-8 percent a year for 5-10 years based on an investment-led strategy. If we fail to do this very soon, the problems of multidimensional poverty, debt, and insecurity may consume us in the next decade.”
The financial analyst said that much work needed to be done despite Nigeria making remarkable achievements in the ease of doing business matrix,
According to him, Nigeria is the leading country according to the Economist Pocket Book of figures with 39.9 percent of its citizens either as nascent or direct entrepreneurs.
On key accomplishment as a nation, he said the issue was not whether Nigeria has recorded some successes but compared to its potential, it still lags in many respects.
On stolen assets, Rewane said it is necessary to recover looted assets but it is not sufficient to solve Nigeria’s management problems.
He said: “Nigeria today has made remarkable achievements in the ease of doing business matrix. Nigeria is the leading country according to the Economist PocketBook of Figures with 39.9% of its citizens either as nascent or direct entrepreneurs.
“The issue however is not whether Nigeria has made some achievements and successes, but compared to its potential, Nigeria is still a laggard in many respects.”
Minister of Interior Rauf Aregbesola noted that Nigerians are very industrious, but lacked the ability to generate enough output needed to boost the country’s economic fortunes.
He made a comparison between a farmer in Nigeria who cultivates a hectare of land and another in China who cultivates the same one hectare of land. According to him, while a Nigerian farmer gets less yields despite all factors being in his favour, his Chinese counterpart may end up getting better yields..
The former Osun State governor said: “Do not get me wrong, Nigerians are very hardworking and industrious, but when you look at the output compared to the efforts they put into their work, it is very very low. Such kind of things cannot navigate the country out of poverty.” .
Aregbesola also extolled women on the occasion of commemorating the International Women’s Day, insisting that women are much more goal-oriented than men.
Osinbajo, who addressed the gathering virtually, commended the organisers for the honour.
The event was also attended by the Chairman of Nigerian Governors’ Forum and Ekiti state governor, Kayode Fayemi; Nasarawa State Governor Abdullahi Sule and Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola.