Nigerian senator, Yahaya Abdullahi, has hinted in his letter to the Aso Rock that the red chamber anticipates the redirection of national economic policy and planning with massive investment into sectors with negligible exposure to foreign currency.
In his letter entitled ‘Senate Resolution on Developing a Post-COVID-19 Nigerian Economy’ addressed to the Chairman of the Economic Sustainability Committee, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the senator said though the memo conveyed the resolution of the Senate, the letter was his personal opinion.
The Kebbi State senate leader stated that it was time the focus of the Nigerian economy changed from “one run on the basis of crude petroleum exports and purchase of consumption items, raw materials and spares from abroad,” noting that the economic model had never worked anywhere in the world.
He admitted in the letter that successive governments had relied on “this unworkable model” for four decades with nothing but rising unemployment, underemployment, corruption and misery to the citizenry.
“What the unanimous resolution of the entire Senate of the Federal Republic envisages is a change of course in national economic policy and planning by bringing government back to the centre of economic affairs.
“This is to be facilitated by fiscal policies that are directed at stimulating growth by massive investment into the productive sectors of the economy – sectors with very little exposure to foreign currency demands; sectors whose requirements for raw materials, labour etc will be sourced entirely from domestic suppliers and should not have up to 20 per cent exposure to foreign exchange requirements,” Abdullahi noted.
He said the senate had also agreed that 10 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product be deployed as a stimulus to revive the economy.
Abdullahi and his colleagues in the senate, therefore, used the medium to call on the Federal Government to seize the “grim period to change the trajectory and structure the economy by appropriating at least 10 per cent of the GDP as a stimulus package for investment in the country.”
They believe that the country should focus on encouraging local production and not subsidising importers with cheap foreign exchange.