Nigeria Economic Forecast

Nigeria Economic Outlook

February 19, 2019

On 16 February, Nigeria’s electoral commission unexpectedly announced the postponement of the general election by one week due to logistical reasons, just hours before polls were scheduled to open. The move has further fueled uncertainty over the outcome of the tight presidential race between incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari and Atiku Abubakar, the main opposition candidate. Although a Buhari victory will likely translate into a continuation of status-quo policy ahead, Abubakar’s business-friendly economic agenda hints at the possibility of a policy shift, particularly in the management of the foreign exchange regime and vital oil industry. The election comes on the heels of recently-released national accounts data which revealed the economy gathered momentum in the final quarter of 2018, with growth hitting an over three-year high on the back of a broad-based expansion within the non-oil sector. The all-important oil and gas sector, however, remained in the doldrums and contracted for the third consecutive quarter in Q4 amid lower oil production and easing global crude prices, weighing on overall activity.

Nigeria Economic Growth

Growth is seen picking up this year on the back of stronger capital investment and consumer spending. However, a continued fall in oil prices and announced oil production cuts by OPEC could dent activity in the all-important oil industry, clouding the outlook. Backtracking of structural reforms aimed at boosting productivity also poses a key downside risk ahead. FocusEconomics panelists see GDP increasing 2.3% in 2019, down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s estimate, and 2.8% in 2020.

Nigeria Economy Data

Population (million)169174179184189
GDP per capita (USD)3,0823,3122,7662,2061,995
GDP (USD bn)522576494405376
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)
Consumption (annual variation in %)21.20.5-0.4-3.7-  
Investment (annual variation in %)7.913.40.6-6.8-  
Industrial Production (annual variation in %)-0.16.0-3.4-9.4-3.6
Unemployment Rate3.
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-1.4-0.9-1.6-2.2-  
Public Debt (% of GDP)12.913.116.019.623.4
Money (annual variation in %)1.320.65.817.81.7
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop)
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)
Policy Interest Rate (%)12.0013.0011.0014.0014.00
Exchange Rate (vs USD)155.2167.5196.5304.5305.5
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)155.3156.5192.6253.2305.3
Current Account (% of GDP)3.70.2-
Current Account Balance (USD bn)19.20.9-15.42.710.4
Trade Balance (USD billion)43.821.0-6.4-0.513.1
Exports (USD billion)95.182.645.934.745.8
Imports (USD billion)51.461.652.335.232.7
Exports (annual variation in %)0.8-13.2-44.4-24.432.0
Imports (annual variation in %)-3.819.9-15.0-32.7-7.3
International Reserves (USD)43.634.529.125.838.8
External Debt (% of GDP)

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Nigeria Facts

Bond Yield14.470.0 %Mar 11
Exchange Rate306.43.08 %Mar 11
Stock Market1.10.0 %Mar 11

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