UK Economist Group paints gloomy outlook on Nigeria’s political, economic future

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The latest five-year outlook by the Economic Intelligence Unit (EIU) has shown that a possible fractious political scene, uncertainty, violent unrest and severe economic difficulties will remain sources of instability in Nigeria in the next five years, The Guardian reports.

According to the business unit arm of the United Kingdom-based Economist Group which provides advisory services through research and analysis, Nigeria faces the biggest challenges to its constitutional democracy since the return to civilian rule in 1999. It noted that risks in the early part of the 2017-2021 prediction are heightened by a likely transfer of power before the electoral cycle at the presidency given that President Muhammadu Buhari has spent much of the first half of this year in the UK receiving treatment for an undisclosed ailment.

Indeed, the outlook, contrary to some expectations by government, noted that policy reform will be slow as efforts to introduce market-oriented reforms and diversify the economy away from oil come up against vested interests, ideological opposition and bureaucratic inefficiency. It added that real GDP growth would ebb to recover from the recession of 2016, given an ongoing period of historically low oil prices and the weak policy response which will sap confidence in the economy more generally.