A financial expert, Dr Samuel Nzekwe, on Wednesday urged the Federal Government to intensify efforts in investing in critical infrastructure in order to boost the productive sector.
Nzekwe made the call while speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ota, Ogun, against the backdrop of the reported drop in the country’s inflation rate from 17.26 per cent in March to 17.24 per cent in April.
NAN reports that the National Bureau of Statistics had on Tuesday said that the inflation rate dropped from 17.26 per cent in March to 17.24 per cent in April.
He said that the drop in the country’s inflation rate was as a result of the intervention of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in the forex market.
Nzekwe, a former President of the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), said that the decision of the CBN made it possible to defend the Naira against the dollar.
He said that this had made inflation rate come down with more people now having access to Naira.
”As long as the CBN is making forex available, the imported goods will continue to be cheaper because Naira is becoming stronger, “he said.
The ANAN boss noted that it was not that the economy had become productive, but that some Federal Government policies, especially CBN intervention in the forex market, had started yielding positive result.
“This is not a guarantee that the economy has totally recovered from the current economic challenges,’’ he added.
He said that the peace in the Niger-Delta had made it possible for the country get more barrels of crude oil and sell at a higher price in the international market.
The development, he said, had helped to boost the nation’s forex reserve used in defending the Naira.
Nzekwe, however, described the present inflation rate as artificial because revenues generated from the sales of petroleum products were being used to bring down the inflation rate in the country.
He said that there would be crisis if the CBN could not sustain the forex market in the future as Nigeria has no control over the price of oil in the international market.
Nzekwe, however, advised that investment in critical infrastructure would make the productive sector to thrive and attract foreign direct investment that would create jobs in the country.
This development, he said, would now offer a picture of the true inflation rate as most of the goods emerging from the productive sector would be cheaper.