The Director, Monetary Policy Department of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr Hassan Mahmud, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has advised West African countries to pay attention to the Agricultural and MSME sectors as well as to look inward and use their domestic resources to revamp their economies
The advice was given at a diagnostic Webinar organised by the West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM) in Lagos. The topic of discussion was “The Impact of COVID-19 on the Economies of WAIFEM Member Countries.” The countries concerned are: Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.
“We should start looking inward at the regional level and at the country level to see that we are revamping our Agricultural sector, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, such that we can be able to aggregate our domestic demand level to meet our supply capacities,” Mahmud said.
According to Mahmud, most advanced economies have started looking inward because of the externalities and shocks that they have experienced.
Mahmud urged countries to consider perfecting or improving the value chain of agricultural sector from the primary production to the end user.
According to him, when this is done, there will be a vertical integration that will revamp a lot of our economies living it less-dependent of external financing.
Earlier, the countries gave very detailed analysis of the state of their economies and their responses to COVID-19, and the story from each representative was more or less the same.
They said the beginning was a health crisis which translated to an economic crisis and then to issues that had to do with fiscal and monetary development.
They expressed optimism that their economies would get back to recovery path in 2021 even though they predicted recession in 2020.