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IMF forecasts acute joblessness for Nigeria

Nigeria may likely face acute unemployment in the nearest future, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said.

The Brettonwood institution opined that the projected population growth is in excess of the economic opportunities available in the country.

In its World Economic Outlook 2018, the IMF projected the economies of Nigeria, Angola and South Africa were predicted to witness sluggish growth in 2019 and beyond.

According to the IMF, Nigeria is expected to grow from 1.9 per cent in 2018 to 2.3 percent in 2019, South Africa and Angola are projected to move from 0.8 to 1.4 and -0.1 to 3.1 per cents respectively.

The IMF gave further breakdown thus: “Nigeria’s projected economic growth in the sub-Sahara Africa from 3.1 percent this year to 3.8 percent in 2019 is not enough to create the needed jobs for the growing population of the region.”

IMF also sounded a warning saying that the projected growth may impair meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) if the downward trend continues.

Speaking on the regional growth, the IMF’s Chief Economist and director of research Maurice Obstfeld, said: “What affects the three major economies affect the whole continent as majority of the countries relies on their trajectories.”

He explained that the continent will witness growth next year but the growing number of working class coupled with less jobs opportunities, huge public debts and poor infrastructure present a challenge in achieving the developmental goals of the United Nations.”

The Deputy Director Research, Milesi Ferretti said while presenting the report that the continent could do much better once these economies are on the a more solid footings, particularly South Africa and Nigeria because they are really large and affect a number of countries in their neighbourhood.

The report stressed that the global economy is expected to grow at 3.7 percent this year and next year – down 0.2 percentage points from an earlier forecast, as the trade war started to hit economic activity worldwide.

The IMF issues the report ahead of the Annual IMF and World Bank meetings where world leaders, finance ministers and nongovernmental organizations will gather this week in Bali, Indonesia.

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