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Economy: CBN, Fiscal Authorities Converge On Abuja To Synergise

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CBN Tower, Abuja
Desirous of monetary and fiscal collaboration in order to
pull the Nigerian economy of the current crunch, economic management
leaders from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Ministries of
Finance, Budget and National Planning as well as Trade and Investment, at the weekend, converged on Abuja to harmonise their policy
perspectives.

Speaking at the opening of the two-day Monetary Policy
Committee (MPC) retreat at the CBN Corporate Headquarters on the theme: “Pathway to Price Stability Conducive to
Economic Growth,” the apex Bank Governor, Godwin
Emefiele, reiterated the need for the country’s monetary and fiscal
authorities to collaborate and harmonize ideas so as to develop
the economy rapidly.
Mr Emefiele, who also chairs the Monetary Policy
Committee, said the MPC Retreat, which for the first time had in
attendance a large representation of the fiscal authorities, was coming
at a period when the country faced serious economic challenges. 
He added
that finding a sustainable solution required a broadened participation
of colleagues from the fiscal side.
The apex bank boss said the retreat, as a brainstorming session, would
provide perspectives on certain Monetary Policy Committee decisions. He
said it would also close the gap on the coordination between monetary
and fiscal authorities to chart a common course and take decisions to
develop the economy.
In his remarks at the brainstorming session, the Minister
of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, said both the
monetary and fiscal Authorities had no choice but to work together to
guarantee the country’s economic growth. He posited that the pathway to
lower interest rate was to ensure monetary and fiscal authorities
collaboration with the private sector.
Also speaking, the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun,
and her Industry, Trade and Investment counterpart, Dr Okechukwu
Enelamah both agreed that solving challenges facing the Nigerian economy
required unconventional tactics.
Mrs Adeosun, while disclosing that there remained a huge number
of unbanked Nigerians whose contributions to the economy are hardly
captured, said the government must devise ways to bring them into the
financial mainstream. 
She also hinted that, based on the current
realities, the Federal Government would have to borrow more to meet its
infrastructural obligation. 
On his part, Dr Enelamah emphasized the need for both
monetary and fiscal authorities to ensure business, market and investor
confidence, as well as policy integrity, in order to improve on the ease
of doing business in Nigeria.
In her presentation entitled: “The Macroeconomic Trilemma
and Monetary Policy in Nigeria,” the Deputy Governor, Economic Policy,
Central of Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Dr Sarah Alade said the onus
of achieving the trilemma of low interest and exchange rates as well as
low inflation should not entirely be the function of the monetary
authority. Rather, she said it therefore necessitated the collaboration
with fiscal authorities.
According to her, there was need for deliberate policies to ensure stability and engender growth in the economy.

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