Olusegun Aganga, the former finance minister, clarified that the naira would stay weak as long as the nation relies heavily on imports.
Speaking on Thursday at the 51st Annual General Meeting of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria at the 3rd Adeola Odutola lecture, Aganga stated that for the naira to remain strong, Nigeria must produce for both domestic consumption and, more crucially, export.
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“What is the wisdom in spending billions defending the naira when it continues to fall instead of investing in genuine manufacturers and exporters of high-value products that would earn Nigeria foreign income and more?” Aganga asked, speaking about the currency’s continuous decline.
The former Minister tasked the government with designating the industrial sector as a national priority and providing financial, policy, and plan support.
“I can assure you that every naira, no matter how large, that is well spent on the strategic industrial sectors can be easily recovered and will deliver tremendous benefits to the economy and the nation,” he said, “unlike the trillions spent on subsidies, bailouts, the Agric Anchor Borrowers Programme, and the refineries.”