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US Ambassador Advises Nigeria To Diversify Economy

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US Ambassador Advises Nigeria To Diversify Economy

U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, Stuart Symington, has advised Nigeria to diversify its economy to experience deeper growth and development.

The ambassador gave the advice at the annual dinner of the Nigeria-American Chamber of Commerce annual dinner in Lagos on Sunday.

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In a statement delivered by Ebuka Igochukwu, the chamber’s communication manager, Symington said Nigeria should reduce its dependence on crude oil.

Another speaker at the event, Chief Olusegun Osunkeye, a former Nestle Foods Chairman, said Nigeria has to unearth the golden opportunities for economic growth and development. To do that, he recommended Agriculture and ICT which he said are viable alternatives to crude oil.

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Honeywell chairman, Oba Otudeko, expressed concern bout the low performance of non-oil nigerian businesses in taking advantage of African Growth and Opportunity Act, AGOA.

NACC president, Otunba Oluwatoyin Akomolafe, said the Chamber was committed to improving trade relations between Nigeria and the U.S.

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African News

Inflation Rate Jumps To Almost 67% In Zimbabwe

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Inflation Rate Jumps To Almost 67% In Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe’s statistics agency, said on Monday, year-on-year inflation rate, for March, has spiked, to almost sixty-seven percent under, the new base used to calculate the consumer price index. The agency noted that under the old basing system it used until February this year, the rate had shot up to a hundred sixty-six percent, confirming that Zimbabwe was already in a hyper-inflation environment.

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An economist, Steve Hankie, posted on twitter that the actual inflation rate was more than 200%. He said this is the second highest annual inflation rate in the world.

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Another economist, Kipson Gundani, says the current inflation figures were emanating from confidence deficit bedeviling the economy.

This new inflation rate may not be a shock to Zimbabwean. In 2008, the country’s inflation reached 500 billion percent, rendering the local currency worthless and eroding savings and pensions.

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African News

Zimbabwe Reaches Agreement With IMF On Economic Reform

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Zimbabwe Reaches Agreement With IMF On Economic Reform

Zimbabwe has reached an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), on a programme of economic policies and structural reforms, that could pave the way to the crisis-hit country, re-engaging with international financial institutions.

Suffering from decades of decline and hyperinflation, Zimbabwe has not been able to borrow from international lenders since 1999, when it started defaulting on its debt. It has arrears of around 2.2 billion dollars with the world bank, the African Development Bank and European Investment Bank.

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Zimbabwe is also facing the challenge of responding to drought and the devastation from cyclone Idai.

Under the agreement with the IMF, policies will focus on eliminating the government’s double-digit fiscal deficit and adoption of reforms to allow market forces to drive the functioning of foreign exchange and other financial markets.

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Zimbabwe had appealed on Tuesday for 613 million dollars in aid from local and foreign donors to cover food imports and help with humanitarian crisis following cyclone Idai.

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NBS says Nigeria’s Foreign Debt Stood At $25.27 Bn In 2018

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NBS says Nigeria's Foreign Debt Stood At $25.27 Bn In 2018

National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on Thursday the country’s foreign and domestic debts stood at twenty-five billion dollars and sixteen trillion naira respectively.

A statement on the bureau’s website further said eleven billion dollars of the debt was multilateral; three hundred forty-five million dollars was bilateral (AFD), and another three billion dollars bilateral from the Exim Bank of China, Jica, India and KFW.  The report further said eleven billion dollars was basically Eurobonds and diaspora bonds.

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Lagos State has the highest foreign debt profile among the thirty-six states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).  It accounts for five and a half per cent.

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Lagos state also holds the largest total domestic debt holding three percent of the country’s total of seventeen trillion naira, with Lagos State accounting for 3.19 per cent of the total domestic debt stock.

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