Financial experts have urged President Muhammadu Buhari’s regime to tackle domestic production and food insecurity challenges to check the country’s rising inflation.
They said this in separate interviews on Friday in Lagos.
Sunny Nwosu, the founder of the Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria, said the authorities should tackle food insecurity spurring inflation.
“The Federal Government should address food insecurity by building more strategic grain reserves and fixing the moribund ones in the country. This will ensure that more food produced will be absorbed into our national silos in order to ensure food self-sufficiency,” Mr Nwosu said.
Mr Nwosu noted that the regime needed to enhance the security situation in many farming communities, adding that “addressing many of the communal crises is imperative to encourage more people to return to farms” and this “will improve our food output and resolve the food-driven inflation.”
Uju Ogubunka, former executive secretary of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), said that dealing with the headwinds impeding production would curb inflation.
“Issues such as uninterrupted electricity supply should be made more available for local manufacturers to ensure they operate at an optimal level. This will enable them to produce substituted imported commodities and enhance their domestic capacity in the process,” Mr Ogubunka said.
He said the Buhari regime should end the unavailability of refined petroleum products because it was responsible for the inflationary rise.
“The sudden increase in the price of petrol and its associated product is driving the cost of transportation in recent times, which is passed down to the final consumer through increases of goods and services,” Mr Ogubunka explained.
Boniface Okezie, the president of the Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, said CBN should unify the foreign exchange market.
“The current multiple foreign exchange rate operated in Nigeria is quite detrimental to genuine businesses. The multiple window gives room for arbitrage in the market and deprive businesses the ability to access the foreign exchange genuinely,” Mr Okezie stressed.
He alleged that CBN contributed to the increase in the inflation rate.
“About N20 trillion have been injected to fund the Federal Government deficit finances over the years and this is detrimental to the economy because the apex bank has surpassed its expected threshold,” Mr Okezie stated.
Nigeria’s inflation rate rose to 21.82 per cent in January from 21.34 per cent in December. The inflation rate dropped for the first time in 11 months in December but picked up again in January.
Food-price inflation, which accounts for agricultural products, increased to 24.32 per cent in January from 23.75 per cent in December.
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