An economist, Dr Aminu Usman, has advised the Federal Government to come up with ingenious policies to help the country out of the economic recession.
Usman, a lecturer at the Department of Economics, Kaduna State University gave the advice in Abuja on Sunday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
The lecturer advised the government to come up with practical policies out of the ordinary to jump start the economy.
“One way to do that is to start paying local contractors and awarding new contracts for rural infrastructure.
“Infrastructure initiatives like the defunct Directorate of Food, Roads and Rural Infrastructure (DFFRI) in order to create market for farm products and the manufactured goods,’’ he said.
According to him, paying foreign contractors only put pressure on Foreign Exchange (FX).
Usman, however, said the recent figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that the economy had sunk into deeper recession.
He said that it also indicated that the economy had some structural deficiencies beyond the crash in the production and price of crude oil.
“Oil price crash has been with us to adjust and redirect the economy on the path of growth.
“Instead, the economy is further sliding into deeper crisis indicating structural weaknesses, requiring urgent measures to address beyond what the government is currently doing.
“Inflation and unemployment rates are running wild at 17.1 percent and 13. 3 percent respectively,’’ he said.
The don said that the figures confirmed the deep crisis the economy was going through.
He said that inflation had devalued people’s income and lives while unemployment and cash squeeze lower purchasing power causing the closure of many Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and further worsening the unemployment situation.
NAN reports that by economic principles, an economy is said to be in recession when these contractions are observed at least over two quarters.
NAN also reports that Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in real terms declined by -2.06 per cent in second quarter of 2016, according to NBS.
NBS also stated the figure was lower by 1.70 per cent points from the negative growth rate of 0.36 per cent recorded in the preceding quarter.