Economy - overview: Nigeria is one of Sub Saharan Africa’s largest economies and relies heavily on oil as its main source of foreign exchange earnings and government revenues. Following the 2008-9 global financial crises, the banking sector was effectively recapitalized and regulation enhanced. Since then, Nigeria’s economic growth has been driven by growth in agriculture, telecommunications, and services. Economic diversification and strong growth have not translated into a significant decline in poverty levels, however - over 62% of Nigeria's 170 million people still live in extreme poverty.
Despite its strong fundamentals, oil-rich Nigeria has been hobbled by inadequate power supply, lack of infrastructure, delays in the passage of legislative reforms, an inefficient property registration system, restrictive trade policies, an inconsistent regulatory environment, a slow and ineffective judicial system, unreliable dispute resolution mechanisms, insecurity, and pervasive corruption. Regulatory constraints and security risks have limited new investment in oil and natural gas, and Nigeria's oil production has contracted every year since 2012.
President BUHARI, elected in March 2015, has established a cabinet of economic ministers that includes several technocrats, and he has announced plans to increase transparency, diversify the economy away from oil, and improve fiscal management, but his reliance on the Central Bank governor has led to overwhelmingly protectionist policies aimed at defending the naira from further devaluation. President BUHARI ran on an anti-corruption platform, and has made some headway in alleviating corruption, such as an implementation of a Treasury Single Account that allows the government to better manage its resources. The government also is working to develop stronger public-private partnerships for roads, agriculture, and power.
Partly because of lower oil prices, Nigeria entered a recession in 2016. However, the medium-term outlook for Nigeria is positive, assuming oil output stabilizes and oil prices recover.
Definition: This entry briefly describes the type of economy, including the degree of market orientation, the level of economic development, the most important natural resources, and the unique areas of specialization. It also characterizes major economic events and policy changes in the most recent 12 months and may include a statement about one or two key future macroeconomic trends.
Source: CIA World Factbook - This page was last updated on July 9, 2017