July 4, 2016
CSEA Annual Report
OPEC basket price increased (Week-on-Week) by 1.6 percent to $49.45 per barrel on March 31, 2017- the first increase recorded in three weeks. Also, Bonny light rose by 4.7 percent to $51.92 per barrel. The rise in crude oil prices reflects demand-side expansion, consequent upon a myriad of factors: slower rise in USA crude reserves, huge supply disruptions in Libya, and the prospective extension of OPEC supply cut deals in member countries. The strengthening of crude oil price amid calm in the Niger Delta oil region, presents positive outlook for the Nigerian economy. However, given the adverse implications of sole dependence on crude oil revenue, the government should avoid returning to the norm and make efforts to intensify investments in other key sectors of the economy
Recently released data by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) shows that there was significant increase in Nigerias total merchandise trade for 2016Q3. Basically, the total merchandise trade increased (quarter-on-quarter) by 16.29 percent to N4, 722 billion in 2016Q3;owing to 29.1 percent increase in exports and 6.2 percent rise in imports. Oil exports increased by 31 percent to N1, 943 billion, while non-oil exports increased by 20.5 percent to N440 billion. However, on the aggregate, Nigeria recorded yet another trade deficit of N104 billion, indicating continuous higher imports relative to exports. Overall, though there is improvement in the performance of non-oil sector, however, this is insufficient to effectively complement the loss in oil trade sustained since the beginning of oil price crash. This suggests that diversification into non-oil sector may not be able to rescue the economy in the short term. However, while the diversification efforts should be sustained, eliminating hurdles in oil production may be instrumental to higher exports, especially as oil price increase is gaining momentum.
Power sector analysis shows a decline in power generated by 8.5 percent from a peak of 3,675 mw to 3,362 mw between April 3, 2016 and April 10, 20169. This record is however still below 5,074.7 mw- the highest peak ever attained in the country. The declining power supply which has been attributed to vandalism of pipelines and gas shortages, has continued to distort economic activities in the country. With the persistent fall in electricity generation, the possibility of attaining the targeted 10,000 mw by 201910 seems unattainable. A clear strategy towards increasing power generation and curbing vandalism is urgently needed.