The World Bank says it is willing to provide technical support to Nigeria in critical areas to facilitate the country’s economic growth and development.
A statement from the ministry of budget and national planning quoted Hafez Ghanem, World Bank’s vice-president for Africa as saying Nigeria is “top priority” during a discussion with Udo Udoma, the minister, in Abuja on Thursday.
Ghanem said the technical support will cover areas such as the economic recovery and growth plan (ERGP), mid-term review, power sector reform, public-private partnerships (PPPs), and population management.
He said apart from tracking the ERGP delivery, the World Bank will also focus on performance tracking and reporting, capacity building for sector officials, economic modelling for policy analysis and forecasting, and Nigeria’s social investment programme.
According to him, it would be difficult for Africa, as a whole, to grow if Nigeria is not growing.
The World Bank official said he would arrange for Nigeria to have an opportunity to speak about its economic progress at the annual meetings of the World Bank/International Monetary Fund (WB/IMF) scheduled to take place in Indonesia.
In his remarks, Udoma said with the introduction of the ERGP, Nigeria’s economic decline has been reversed, and the country had exited recession.
He expressed appreciation for the support of the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and other development partners in executing the ERGP and appealed to the IFC to fulfill its promise to provide funding support for some projects identified during the ERGP Focus Labs.