Nigeria Plans $1.3 Billion Economic Stimulus to Boost Economy

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Nigeria's President Bola Tinubu has proposed an economic stimulus package of $1.3 billion aimed at tackling significant challenges, including food insecurity.

Nigerian President Bola Tinubu has instructed his economic management team to develop a 2 trillion naira ($1.33 billion) stimulus plan aimed at addressing concerns over food supplies and pricing, and bolstering key sectors, the finance minister announced on Thursday.

The plan, which will be crafted in collaboration with state governments and the private sector, will allocate 1 trillion naira ($664.45 million) towards agriculture, food security, and the energy sector. An additional 350 billion naira is earmarked for health and social welfare, said Olawale Edun during a briefing with reporters.

Since assuming office in May of last year, Tinubu has implemented reforms such as cutting fuel and electricity subsidies and devaluing the naira currency twice, in efforts to attract investment and enhance productivity. However, economic growth remains below the targeted 6% annual expansion, and these reforms have contributed to soaring inflation, now at a 28-year peak, exacerbating the cost-of-living crisis.

"Food production and food security are Mr. President's top priorities," emphasized Edun on Wednesday following the inauguration of an overhauled economic management structure. "Ensuring affordable food prices and adequate supply is foremost in Mr. President's agenda at this critical time."

The stimulus plan also aims to tackle declines in oil output, aspiring to boost production to 2 million barrels per day (bpd) to generate additional revenue and foreign exchange for the economy.

Nigeria, heavily reliant on oil for over half of its revenue and about 90% of foreign exchange earnings, has seen oil production decline in recent years due to rampant theft, sabotage, and the withdrawal of oil majors from onshore fields affected by insecurity in favor of offshore exploration.

Edun did not specify a timeline for the implementation of the stimulus plan.