The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Emefiele has said that he hopes to take the Nigerian economy where it was when he was a child.
The apex bank boss said this on Tuesday during an interview on Arise TV.
The CBN under the leadership of Emefiele has introduced many intervention programmes to boost the economy and take it to the path of sustainable growth.
Emefiele who turned 60 recently may have experienced a childhood period where Nigeria evolved from a poor agricultural economy into a relatively rich, oil-dominated one. In 1969 the oil sector accounted for less than three per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and a modest $370m in exports (42 per cent of total exports); while Nigeria’s per capita income was only $130.
Both the story is different currently with the country having to depend on oil for 95 per cent of foreign exchange earnings with unemployment rate rising to as high as 33 per cent.
Emefiele said, “If through our policies we can just return or move Nigeria close to what it was when I was growing up, then I can leave office look back and thank God that we left something for our children.
“Nigeria is a great country, with resources enough to be self-sufficient and no need to rely heavily on oil to provide for the economy this is why we are focusing on diversifying the economy.”
Emefiele said the apex bank’s policy on production and Productivity which is targeted at providing finance to 100 companies in 100 days will bring about economic growth, jobs creation, and social impact.
“The project is designed to help achieve President Muhammdu Buhari push to create 10 million jobs in 10 year as 80 per cent of jobs created by funded projects under the policy must be for Nigerians while 50 per cent of raw materials for the project must be sourced locally.”
He also noted that any firm interested in participating must have considerable potential for foreign exchange revenues as well as the capacity to improve the ease of doing business in the country.
Emefiele added, “We are going to supervise all selected firms. Infact in all of our initiatives, we visit at least twice a year to guarantee that the money given out as a loan is used for its intended purpose.”
He also revealed that over N3trn has been disbursed to the Ministry of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises to boost the economy.