Ministers says economy is strong and stable.
The Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, on Monday cause a delightful stir at the third round of the 2013 Ministerial Platform in Abuja when she presented three sponge cakes and used them to educate attendees on the country’s Gross Domestic Product growth.
Starting with the smallest cake with figurines on it, she explained the Federal Government’s growth plan, illustrating with a family that has just the cake to feed on.
“Having this cake does not mean that every problem in your household is solved. With one wife and three children, you are going to be suffering. Of course, you want this cake to grow.” Ms. Okonjo-Iweala said.
Changing the cake for a bigger one, she loads more figurines on the bigger cake.
“Assuming the man takes another wife with three more children, there will still be a need for the cake to grow bigger. This cake is our GDP and we have to keep growing our GDP in line with the growing population,” she explained.
She expounded on the need for Nigerians to shun critics and understand the effect of a GDP growth in a nation’s economy. She said the Nigerian economy has remained strong and stable following growth in the nation’s GDP at 6.5 per cent but added that despite its stability, the economy faces various challenges hence, the need for faster growth.
Listing the ministry’s achievement so far, Ms. Okonjo-Iweala revealed that Nigeria is one of the countries undergoing an upgrade and yet has a stable economy and noted how rare this is.
Speaking on the effective use of SURE – P funds, Ms. Okonjo-Iweala said that over 400,000 women have been saved by these funds following the flag-off of the Save One Million Lives by 2015. She also stated that inflation rate has slowed to 9.1 per cent from 12.4 per cent in May, 2011; while the dollar exchange rate in the last two years has been quite stable at between ₦155 and ₦160 and the country recorded $7 billion (N1.1 trillion) of foreign investment in 2012 making it the highest investment destination in Africa.
She also said the federal government discovered and weeded out 45,000 Ghost workers and saved N118bn since the Integrated Payroll Payment System began.