The World Bank expects Nigeria’s economy to grow slightly less than 2 percent this year, largely driven by the non-oil industry and services sectors, as the approach of elections keeps foreign investors away, it said on Wednesday.
Nigeria emerged from a recession last year but growth remains fragile, with the government borrowing both at home and abroad to help fund its budget. It has raised almost $9 billion from the eurobond market since 2017 to boost growth. “Nigeria’s emergence from recession remains sluggish, and sectoral growth patterns are unstable. In the second quarter of 2018, the oil sector contracted by 4.0 percent,” the bank said in a statement.
GDP grew by 0.83 percent last year after shrinking by 1.58 percent in 2016, its first annual contraction in 25 years. For this year, Nigeria’s central bank is projecting growth of 1.75 percent. Nigeria is largely dependent on its oil sector for government revenues and foreign exchange, but it has been constrained by a subsidy on petrol and other deductions, the bank said, noting that foreign investment was stagnant.