World Bank 2The World Bank has predicted that Nigeria’s economy would grow by 4.6 per cent in 2016. Its prediction was based on the assumption that oil prices would stabilize this year.

The group, in its January 2016 Global Economic Prospects,projected that the Sub-Saharan African region would grow to 4.2 per cent in 2016 from 3.4 per cent in 2015 as commodity prices stabilize.

Nigeria is projected to expand 4.6 per cent after growing by 3.3 per cent last year while South Africa is expected to advance only modestly to 1.4 per cent growth from 1.3 per cent in the year just ended. It noted that spillovers from major emerging markets would constrain growth in developing countries and pose a threat to hard-won gains in raising people out of poverty.

Developing economies are forecasted to expand by 4.8 percent in 2016, less than expected earlier but up from a post-crisis low of 4.3 per cent in the year just ended. Growth is projected to slow further in China, while Russia and Brazil are expected to remain in recession in 2016. The South Asia region, led by India,is projected to be a bright spot.

World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim, said: “More than 40 per cent of the world’s poor live in the developing countries where growth slowed in 2015. Developing countries should focus on building resilience to a weaker economic environment and shielding the most vulnerable. The benefits from reforms to governance and business conditions are potentially large and could help offset the effects of slow growth in larger economies.”

According to World Bank Group Vice President and Chief Economist Kaushik Basu, “there is greater divergence in performance among emerging economies. Compared to six months ago, risks have increased, particularly those associated with the possibility of a disorderly slowdown in a major emerging economy. A combination of fiscal and central bank policies can be helpful in mitigating these risks and supporting growth.”

By Dike Onwuamaeze

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