The Federal Executive Council has approved a N2.3 trillion stimulus package to boost the Nigerian economy in the wake of disruptions and challenges posed by COVID-19 pandemic.
This was made known by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, while briefing State House correspondents at the end of the Council meeting in Abuja on Wednesday she noted that the package was part of the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan (NESP) as recommended by the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s led committee.
She observed that the goals of the NESP is to create jobs, put money into the economy, as well as stop the economy from slipping into recession, support small businesses and prioritize local content (Made-in-Nigeria).
Her words, “The total package that we presented today is in the sum of N2.3 trillion, N500 billion of this is a stimulus package that is already provided for in the amended 2020 Appropriations Act. These are funds that we have sourced from special accounts.
“There is a strategy that has been adopted and this whole plan is to enable us respond to the triple problem of low exchange rate, youth unemployment as well as negative growth which is facing us now.
“The plan has to also support small businesses that have suffered severe impact of COVID-19 as a result of lock down. Specially, the hotel (hospitality) industry, private schools, restaurants as well as the transport sector have been very well impacted by this.
“We have also seen a significant impact on the poor and the vulnerable and even people that were okay as small traders, have been hard hit by standstill that we witnessed as a result of lockdowns,’’ she said.
She stated that the Council endorsed the adoption of direct labour intervention process in the execution of agricultural, housing and road construction projects to create jobs, using labour intensive methods.
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