The Federal Government said it was encouraged by the 2.05 percent growth in the non-oil sector for the
second quarter of 2018.
It noted that the achievement was an evidence that the implementation of the targeted policies and programs of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) was yielding positive results.
This was made known in a statement released by the Ministry of Budget and National Planning on Monday.
The ERGP is a four-year medium term strategic blueprint of the Federal Government covering 2017 to 2020 and focusing on human capital investment, restoration of economic growth, and building a competitive economy.
Recall that the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) had, in its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) report for Q2 2018 released earlier today, said the rate at which the nation’s economy grew in the second quarter of 2018 slowed to 1.50 percent from 1.95 percent recorded in previous quarter.
The report indicated that the oil GDP contracted by -3.95 percent from 14.77 percent in Q1 2018, while non-oil GDP grew by 2.05 percent in Q2 2018 from 0.76 percent in Q1 2018.
According to the statement, the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma, who was reacting to the NBS report, expressed his delight over the latest report, stressing that the nation’s economy has continued to sustained its positive growth.
The statement quoted Udoma as saying the ERGP is focussed on diversifying the economy away from dependence on the oil and gas sector, adding that he was encouraged that efforts are yielding fruits by the continuing growth in the non-oil sector.
The minister regretted that there was a slight drop in real GDP growth rate for Q2, pointing out that the downturn was as a result of the contraction in the oil sector.
He added that the contraction in the Crude oil and Gas sectors was attributable to some production issues which, according to him, were being addressed by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
“For instance, average crude oil production was only 1.84 million barrels per day in Q2 2018 as opposed to an average production of 2 million barrels per day in Q1 2018,” he noted.
He expressed optimism that once these issues are addressed,the country would be able to achieve positive growth in the oil and gas sector.
“As the Minister has repeatedly emphasized, the Nigerian economy needs growth from both the oil, as well as the non-oil sectors, to achieve its Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) growth targets.
“Another area of concern for Government was the slightly weaker growth in the Agriculture sector which slowed to 1.19% in the second quarter in 2018 compared to 3.0% in the first quarter of 2018.This is partly attributable to security challenges mainly in the North East and North Central zones,” the statement read.
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