Minister of National Planning, Mr. Shamsuddeen Usman
The states' Gross Domestic Product (GDP) Computation Project currently being pursued to ascertain the level of economic activities in the respective states may be limited by infrastructure gaps, lack of integrity in data generated as well as competence in efficient data planning.
According to a draft report on the NEEDS Assessment Survey of Pilot States' Statistical Agencies and Planning Commission, statistical information in the country was seriously lacking, notwithstanding the importance of data to economic development.
It said even where data was available, its accuracy and integrity were often questionable.
The report, however, called for the need for state governments to create planning commissions and statistical bureux similar to the structure at the national level.
Minister of National Planning, Mr. Shamsuddeen Usman, said there was the need to bridge "significant gaps" to facilitate effective performance of states' statistical agencies in order to pave the way for the computation of states' GDP.
The minister said there were compelling reasons for a collaborative approach to make the exercise work since the state GDP computation had never been carried out in the country.
He said the commission was working closely with the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and the Governors' Forum as well as development partners to ensure a successful implementation which would be built on a sound framework.
He said the result of the survey was expected to assist in the preparation of the states towards addressing vital data and information gaps and enable them own the process of determining GDP in their respective states.
Usman said the exercise was necessary given that most of the economic activities in various parts of the country were not being capture in the national GDP estimates.
The report had helped to highlight the strength and weaknesses of states' planning commissions and staitistical agencies.