The current recession, which the Nigerian economy recently slid into , will be short- lived, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning , Mrs Zainab Ahmed, has said .
Ahmed said this on Monday at the ongoing 26th Nigerian Economic Summit organised by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group and the Federal Ministry of Finance , Budget , and National Planning .
She said the country would emerge from the recession in the fourth quarter of this year or by the first quarter of 2021.
Nigeria, Africa ’ s biggest economy , entered its second recession in five years in the third quarter of this year as the Gross Domestic Product fell for the second consecutive quarter .
The GDP dropped by 3.62 per cent in Q 3 and 6. 10 per cent in Q2, according to the National Bureau of Statistics .
The finance minister said the COVID -19 -induced recession followed the pattern across the world where many countries had entered an economic recession.
“ Let me remind us that before the impact of COVID- 19, the Nigerian economy was experiencing sustained growth , which had been improving quarter by quarter until the second quarter of 2020, when the impact of the COVID -19 was felt,” she said .
Ahmed said other countries also in recession, including the United Kingdom and the United States, recorded much deeper contraction than that of Nigeria.
“ Nigeria is not alone in this, but I will say that Nigeria has outperformed all of these economies in terms of the record of a negative growth .”
According to her, South Africa , which recorded a decline of -50 per cent compared to Nigeria’ s – 6. 1 per cent in Q2, will also record a deeper negative growth in Q 3.
Ahmed said , “ While the economy has entered into recession in the third quarter, the trend of the growth suggests that this will be a short-lived recession, and indeed by the fourth or, at worst , the first quarter of 2021, the country will exit recession.
“ Our expectation of a quick exit , which will be historically fast, is anchored on the several complementary fiscal, real sector and monetary interventions that have been proactively introduced by government to forestall a far worse decline of the economy and alleviate the negative consequences of the pandemic. ”