COVID-19 Effect: Nigeria’s Economic Growth Slows to 1.87% in Q1 2020

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SWITZERLAND, MAY 25 – The damaging effects of the COVID-19 epidemic on Nigeria is beginning to reflect in statistics as Nigeria’s economic growth reverses to 1.87% in the first quarter(Q1) of 2020 from 2.55% in the last quarter(Q4) of 2019 when Nigeria’s economy got to its highest growth since the 2016 recession.

In the first quarter of 2020, Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 1.87%(year-on-year) in real terms, according to the latest data from the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics(NBS) on Monday, sighted by Today’s ECho’s correspondent.

“This performance was recorded against the backdrop of significant global disruptions resulting from the COVID-19 public health crisis, a sharp fall in oil prices and restricted international trade,” Nigeria’s Statistician- General and NBS CEO, Dr Yemi Kale remarked on the newly-released GDP report for Q1 2020.

Today’s Echo gathers that the performance recorded in Q1 2020 represents a drop of –0.23% points compared to Q1 2019 and –0.68% points compared to Q4 2019, reflecting the earliest effects of the disruption, particularly on the non-oil economy. Quarter on quarter, real GDP growth was –14.27% compared to 5.59% recorded in the preceding quarter.

In the quarter under review, aggregate GDP stood at N35,647,406.08 million in nominal terms. This performance was higher when compared to the first quarter of 2019 which recorded N31,824,349.67million, with a nominal growth rate of 12.01% year on year. Relative to the first quarter of 2019, the
nominal growth rate was higher by 0.11% points but lower than the proceeding quarter by –0.32% points.

For better clarity, the Nigerian economy has been classified broadly into the oil and non-oil sectors in the report

Nevertheless, Nigeria is still far off, from the predicted -3.4% contraction predicted by the World Bank for Nigeria in 2020.

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