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The World Bank Group president, Jim Yong Kim on Thursday had said that in line with the President Mohammadu Buhari’s request, they had concentrated on the Northern part of Nigeria.

Christine Lagarde, the managing director of International Monetary Fund and Kim the president of World Bank who gave their statement at a separate press conference in Washington DC, United States advised the President of Nigeria Buhari to invest more on things that will enhance the economic growth of Nigeria.

Kim said, You know, in my very first meeting with President Buhari he said specifically that he would like us to shift our focus to the northern region of Nigeria and we’ve done that. Now, it has been very difficult. The work there has been very difficult.

I think Nigeria, of course, has suffered from the dropping oil prices. I think things are just now getting better. But the conversation we need to have with Nigeria, I think, is in many ways related to the theme that I brought to the table just this past week, which is the investment in human capital. The percentage of the Gross Domestic Product that Nigeria spends on healthcare is less than one percent.”

He added, Despite that, there is so much turbulence in the northern part of the country, and there is the hit that was taken from the drop in the oil prices. Nigeria has to think ahead and invest in its people. Investing in the things that will allow Nigeria to be a thriving, rapidly growing economy in the future is what the country has to focus on right now.”

Kim also said, Focusing on the northern part of Nigeria, we hope that as commodity prices stabilise and oil prices come back up, the economy will grow a bit more. But very, very much important is the need to focus on what the drivers of growth in the future will be.

The World Bank president went on to say that in order to prepare the continent for the next phase of growth, the bank will invest in human capital in Nigeria and in other regions of Africa.

CHRISTINE LAGARDE
CHRISTINE LAGARDE

Christine Lagarde in her statement said that Nigeria and some other sub-Saharan African countries had posted suboptimal growth in the past times.

She, however, said that considering the huge demographic potential of Nigeria and some other countries in Africa, the growth percentage is very small.

Because of the situation, she said the International Monetary Fund would be involving the central banks’ Governors and the ministers of finance from the region attending the annual World Bank and International Monetary Fund IMF meeting on how they can enhance and stabilize economic growth in these countries.

Lagarde said The Sub-Saharan Africa is one region of the world where growth is suboptimal. Those countries grow at an average growth of 2.5 per cent. That is too low for the demographic expansion of the region.

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