Expert Chides FG’s Economic Management Team

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Nume Ekeghe

A financial market analyst and Managing Partner of RTC Advisory Services, Mr Opeyemi Agbaje on Thursday said he lacks faith in the present economic management team, just as he argued that they do not have what it takes to steer the economy out of recession.

Agbaje said this at the Risk Managers Association of Nigeria (RIMAN) quarterly meeting held in Lagos.
Agbaje who presented a paper title: “Challenges of Economic Recession: Risk Management Perspective” spoke on the issues confronting the nation’s economy.

Agbaje said: “It is patent to the eye that we have a weak economic cabinet. And as long as we are debating about that, it shows we are not serious with our economic recovery. A few day ago we learned on national TV that our minister for budget and planning was asked how much we owe and didn’t know. That was the final confirmation that they are not serious about our economy.”

He added: “All of this has created loss of confidence in the Nigerian economy. We have now moved beyond the economic argument to the fact that there is no confidence in the economy. So even if policy changes the number priority for policy direction is how to restore confidence amongst investors.”

“You might do the right thing like CBN devaluing the currency which is now weaker than it should be, but the confidence is not there anymore.”

Speaking further on policies that lead to the crisis of the financial system, he added: “Policies have weakened the financial sector such as the Treasury Single Account (TSA), Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) charges, no commission on turnover (CoT), etc.

“The point is that policy environment has weakened the financial sector and the financial sector’s contribution to the economy is not measured by the size of GDP such as telecoms because it facilitates every other activities and banking because it is the what channels resources to the economy. So if you weaken the financial sector because of some anger or whatever, we are just shooting ourselves on the foot and the implication would be a recession.”