As Covid-19 continues to unfold across the globe, with experts still carrying out research on its impact on countries, analysts at CSL Research have opined tha “the pandemic brought out the age-long inherent weaknesses of the Nigerian economy.” The analysts stated this while reacting to the National Bureau of Statistics’ (NBS) recent report titled, “The impact of Covid-19 on Business Enterprises in Nigeria.” The report, which gave a detailed view of the effects of the pandemic on businesses, employment, and productivity, was based on a survey conducted by the NBS and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) between November and December 2020, to assess the socioeconomic challenges posed by the pandemic as well as assisting economic and political managers in policymaking, medium and long-term planning. Commenting on the report, the CSL Research analysts stated: “In our view, the pandemic brought out the age-long inherent weaknesses of the Nigerian economy.
One, it revealed that a high proportion of the economy are daily wage earners, which made it difficult for the government to sustain the movement restrictions and lockdowns. “Also, the country’s revenue profile, which remains skewed to crude oil, puts the economy on a long haul to sustainable growth. Many businesses in Nigeria have begun to recover, evident in the 5.0 per cent GDP growth in Q2’21.
Though base effect in the non-oil sector contributed to the Q2 growth, some sectors saw a pickup in activities. Growth in the services sector scaled to 9.3% from a negative of 0.4% in the prior quarter. “The service sector growth was mainly supported by domestic trade sector growth (+22.5%, the highest historically) and growth in the real estate sector (+3.9%), with both sectors accounting for 21.9% of the economy. Despite the country’s structural challenges and FX liquidity crunch, the manufacturing sector grew 3.5 per cent, the highest growth rate since Q1-2015. The increased credit to the sector and CBN’s continued intervention in the sector largely drove the performance.”