The curtains fell on the 26th edition of the Nigerian Economic Summit (NES#26) on Tuesday with participants from the public and private sectors as well as sub-nationals resolving to pool resources together to develop partnerships towards building a resilient economy for the country.
At the closing session, the Minister for Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, and her counterpart in the Youth and Sports Ministry, Sunday Dare, gave their commitments to the effort to mobilise available resources, including those for the youth, toward speedy recovery of the country’s economy.
Mrs Ahmed in her closing remarks reiterated her commitment and that of the government to pursue the early exit of the country’s economy from the current recession.
On Saturday, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said after contractions consecutively for the first and second quarters of the year, the country’s economy slipped into another recession, the second in five years.
The contraction from -6.1 per cent in the first quarter to -3.62 per cent in the second quarter was largely blamed on the continued negative impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic, which virtually crippled most of the world’s economies.
But, the Finance Ministry said although the decline in the economy was not as bad as initially expected, because of the pre-emptive stimulus measures adopted by the government, there was a renewed commitment to sustain the interventions to pull the economy out of recession earlier than anticipated.
She said her key takeaway from the summit was the need for all sectors of the economy to commit to “building strong partnerships for a resilient economy.”
To achieve this objective, the minister said Nigerians need to cooperate more, either between the federal and sub-national governments, or between government and private sector, or government and the citizens.
“We need to re-establish the social contract between the government and the people, while the government needs to listen and consult more with the people to build a solid consensus on issues of national development,” the minister said.