The Managing Director, Nesbet Consulting, a Lagos-based firm of financial and management consultants, Dr. Alaba Olusemore, has projected that current lull in the economy may end by second quarter of next year.
Olusemore who is a fellow, Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), said Nigerians, may not breathe a sigh of relief until the second quarter of next year when would-be-ministers currently undergoing screening by the National Assembly would have settled down for business after being assigned portfolios.
According to him, the ministers are not likely to get their arts together and provide policy direction for the economy anytime this year, even after their confirmation and swearing-in, adding that this year only has less than three months to end. “We may not see any major improvement in the economy before the end of this year. The second quarter of 2016 is more to it,” Olusemore projected.
He however said between now and second quarter of next year, the economy would hopefully start taking shape, adding that there is need for President Muhammadu Buhari to aggressively pursue policies that will end Nigeria’s over-dependence on proceeds from oil.
“The monolithic nature of the economy is unsustainable. We must immediately begin to initiate and sustain policies directed at economic diversification,” he said, stressing that there has to be a strategic refocusing on the manufacturing and agriculture sectors which have the potential to create jobs.
He also identified Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as another area with lots of promises of turning around the fortunes of the economy.
“Government must encourage SMEs to succeed. SME operators should be supported; they must have access to funds and services of consultants and mentors. Consultants should assist them develop bankable business plans and proposals,” he said.