Stockbrokers Optimistic of Nigeria’s Economic Growth in 2023

Kayode Tokede

Top Stockbrokers yesterday in Lagos forecasted recovery in 2023 despite the headwinds and uncertainties associated with the economy.

The Nigerian economy is going through a tough period with headwinds, including imported inflation, huge debt service-to-revenue ratio, high exchanges rates, forex scarcity, devaluation of currency, budget deficit of N12 trillion in 2023, removal of fuel subsidy on petroleum price, insecurity  and uncertainty about the outcome of the upcoming presidential election amongst others.

Speaking at a conversation organized by Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS) on “The Nigerian Economic Review of 2022 and Outlook for 2023”, two prominent stockbrokers, President of Association of Capital Market Academics, Professor Uche Uwaleke and Chairman, Research and Technical, CIS, Mr. Ayo Ebo, who spoke on the “Macroeconomic Performance and the Capital Market” and The Nigerian Economic Review of 2022 and Outlook for 2023 respectively  assured the investing public that the economy had strong potential to bounce back this year.

They, however, urged whoever emerges  the Nigerian President after this year’s election government to address   structural issues that militate against the country’s economic development.

According to Uwaleke, “Contrary to projections in several quarters, government’s fiscal position is likely to improve in 2023 on account of the following: Improvement in crude oil revenue from increase in crude oil production, assuming crude oil price does not disappoint and incidence of oil theft continues to go down. Savings from fuel subsidy removal will increase  in government revenue.  Implementation of Finance Act 2022 and  unification of exchange rates will boost economic growth and development .”

On the outcome of 2023 general election, he explained that Gross Domestic Product (GDP) may not improve as the three candidates have the same manifestos.

The three major presidential candidates he mentioned are: Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP); Peter Obi, Labour Party and Asiwaju Tinubu Ahmed, All Progressive Congress (APC).

“All three seem favourably disposed to untying the Gordian Knot currently facing the Nigerian economy namely fuel subsidy removal and elimination of multiple exchange rates,” he said.

On debt, he said the current $500 million Eurobond bullet repayment which must be made in July 2023 does not pose any threat to the country’s external reserves of over $37 billion, adding that the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria may likely pause policy rate hike in their scheduled meeting of May 2023, if not before then, to usher in the new administration.

Corroborating him, Ebo stated that expected higher crude oil would increase government revenue in the year.

“Goods account balance is expected to recover in 2022 due to higher crude oil prices. In 2023, the goods account is expected to benefit from reduced forex  outflow on petroleum motor spirit ( PMS) Importation, following the coming onstream of Dangote’s refinery and promotion of non-oil export. Increase spread of working-class Nigerians in the diaspora is expected to continue supporting the strong performance of the transfers account, especially, the remittance component. Political stability post-2022 and more market-oriented policies of the new administration are expected to drive a steady recovery in portfolio inflows over the medium term. An optimal growth rate for Nigeria is between. five and 7 per cent/ per annum, “Ebo said.

Speaking on “The Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers’ Scorecard”, the President and Chairman of Council, Mr Oluwole Adeosun, also explained that the Nigerian economy would experience growth during the year, listed many achievements of the Institute in the review period and stated that the Institute shall pursue its advocacy roles with renewed vigour

“In 2023, we shall be working to increase the number of Nigerian Universities offering both Post-Graduate and Bachelor’s Degree courses in Securities and Investment / Capital Market Studies. We shall be pursuing more vigorously, activities to promote Capital Market Literacy across the entire geo-political zones of Nigeria.

“ In furtherance of our ‘Catch Them Young campaign, we shall make deliberate efforts to penetrate the university campuses more rigorously and effectively. The CIS Academy will work even harder to bring affordable world class training to our members, in eme

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