Nigeria should seek help from international institutions, adopt flexible exchange rate: IMF

By The Rainbow
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The Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, has  said the first step  for Nigeria in the bid to reflate her economy is  to seek the help of international institutions that can best help.

She spoke at the Conference Hall of the IMF  in Washington DC, United States of America, in the company of the IMF's First Deputy Managing Director, David Lipton, and spokesperson, Gerry Rice.

For the IMF boss,  Nigeria should get the 2016 Budget approved as quickly as possible.

She said, “Our recommendation is that Nigeria seeks help from the international institutions that can best help.

“Second, that Nigeria is open-minded in using flexibility of the exchange rates, in order to absorb some of the shocks. We believe that this is more efficient than to have a list of products that are barred from being imported to the country.

“Third, we believe that it's really important that budget be completed, decided and approved and we stand ready to help Nigeria, if it wants to seek our help.”

“I believe, having visited Nigeria in January, that it is also really important that the country looks at diversifying its economy, because it cannot rely exclusively on commodity prices only, particularly oil, because it might very well stay low for longer,” she said.

“Nigeria is full of energy, smart people, and can really transform some of its activities including the agricultural sector where there is just too much by way of import, when there could be a lot of transformation in Nigeria and local consumption.

“A three-pronged approach with monetary, fiscal, and structural actions can work as a virtuous trinity, lifting actual and potential growth, averting recession risks, and enhancing financial stability.”