Nigeria’s economy to accelerate by 2.2% in 2019, says World Bank

Economic growth in Nigeria is expected to rise to 2.2 percent in 2019, the World Bank has said in its latest economic outlook report.

The January 2019 report titled Global Economic Prospects; Darkening Skies pointed out that the projected growth is on the assumption that oil production will recover and a slow improvement in private demand will constrain growth in the non-oil industrial sector.

Overall regional outlook by the bank was similarly positive as it expects growth in Sub-Saharan Africa to accelerate to 3.4 percent in 2019, predicated on diminished policy uncertainty and improved investment in large economies together with continued robust growth in non-resource intensive countries, the bank said.

Angola is also forecast to grow 2.9 percent in 2019 as the oil sector recovers as new oil fields come on stream and as reforms bolster the business environment while South Africa is projected to accelerate modestly to a 1.3 percent pace, amid constraints on domestic demand and limited government spending.

The bank’s projections are despite global expansion expected to decline to 2.9 percent in 2019. Global economic outlook by the bank were not so cheery as growth was projected to soften from a downward revised 3 percent in 2018 to 2.9 percent in 2019.

The global economic projections according to the world bank is as a result of rising downside risks. “International trade and manufacturing activity have softened, trade tensions remain elevated, and some large emerging markets have experienced substantial financial market pressures,” the bank’s January 2019 Global Economic Prospects says.

It added that growth among advanced economies is forecast to drop to 2 percent this year. Slowing external demand, rising borrowing costs, and persistent policy uncertainties are also expected to weigh on the outlook for emerging market and developing economies. Growth for this group is anticipated to hold steady at a weaker-than-expected 4.2 percent this year.

“At the beginning of 2018 the global economy was firing on all cylinders, but it lost speed during the year and the ride could get even bumpier in the year ahead”, said  Kristalina Georgieva, World Bank chief executive officer.

 “As economic and financial headwinds intensify for emerging and developing countries, the world’s progress in reducing extreme poverty could be jeopardized. To keep the momentum, countries need to invest in people, foster inclusive growth, and build resilient societies,” the chief executive stressed.