Speaking the Nations Mind

Economy Record Positive Trade Balance- NEPC

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The Nigerian Economy is beginning to record positive trade balance which is as a result of increase in exports.

The Executive Director, Nigerian Export Promotion Council, Mr. Olusegun Awolowo made the assertion while reacting to the recent release made by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on the Q2, 2017 report on Foreign Trade in Goods Statistics.

The report, which covered seven sectors, namely; Agriculture, Oil & Gas, Raw Materials, Solid Minerals,   Manufactured   Goods,   Energy   and   other   Oil   related   goods   puts Nigeria’s  total   export   value   at   N3.1   Trillion   in   Q2,   2017   representing   an increase of 3.2% over Q1 2017 and a very significant 73.48% over Q2 in 2016.

He said sustained effort of the  Buhari Administration aimed at  economic diversification   was paying-off as the growth of 3.2% in export attest to the fact that the economy is on the path of growth.

 “This is proof that the economy has indeed recovered from recession   and   is   on   its   way   to   sustainable   growth   as   envisioned   by   the administration   of   President   Muhammadu   Buhari, in   the   recently launched Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).”

“As expected, we therefore see a strong correlation between   economic   recovery   and   improved   export   trade   i.e.   as   exports increase,   the   economy   improves.   Current   efforts   by   the   Government   to accelerate the development of a more diversified economy, with emphasis on non-oil exports, has started to yield positive results,” Awolowo continued

He called for all hands to be on deck to build a stronger and more vibrant economy as the council would continue to leverage on the power of export to transform the economy.

“I am happy for the achievement of Trade Surplus due to exports.

The Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) focuses entirely on leveraging the   power   of   exports   to   transform   the   Nigerian   economy,   create   jobs, lift people out of poverty, and strengthen the government’s finances,” the NEPC boss said.

He reiterated the councils commitment to support nigeria’s economic growth in line with its Zero Oil Agenda.

“Our efforts in the coming months will be to deepen Nigeria’s product penetration into these and other countries; and to radically increase the volume and value of our sales.

Although   oil   continues   to   dominate   our   exports   with   crude   accounting   for42.57% and other oil products 21.86%, the future of our economy is beyond oil as clearly laid out in the ‘Zero Oil Agenda’ which is central in the Nigerian Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (NERGP).

As observed from the report, there   are   remarkable   increases   in   volumes   and   value   in   other sectors signifying  efforts  at  diversifying   the   economy   through   a   deliberate Plan. Hence, raw materials, agriculture, solid minerals and manufactured goods are witnessing Year on Year growth.

Businesses   in   the   non-oil   sector   have   benefited   from   FGN   initiatives   and efforts,” Awolowo added.

“For instance, Trade Promotion and Facilitation activities of NEPC over the   last   three   years   working   in   partnership   with   USAID   NEXTT   and   the Cashew Sector opened up new market for Cashew with Vietnam. In Q2 2017, Cashew dominated the agricultural goods export at a value of N13.556bn, out of which export value to Vietnam alone was N12.16bn.

The vision in coming months and years therefore, is to continue growing the size of Nigeria’s export revenue,  but just as importantly, to change the shape and structure of the national   export   basket   until   it   is   overweight   non-oil. We at   the   Nigerian   Export   Promotion   Council   are   confident   that   Nigeria   can achieve the same. Our economic future is tied to the export revolution,” he said.

Mr   Awolowo   maintained   that   the   lifting   of   the   suspension   of the   Export Expansion Grant (EEG) and the re-activation of the Export Development Fund (EDF), would continue to stimulate the growth of the non-oil export sector, increasing the sector’s contribution to the nation’s GDP.

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