By Mike Adeyemi
The Kwara Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mine and Agriculture (KWACIMA) has said, the indices of recession are still much in the country.
It stated this against the backdrop of the recent report that Nigeria exited recession in the last quarter of 2020.
The Chairman of KWACIMA, Prince Ayo Fagbemi, stated this on Friday while fielding questions from our reporter in his Ilorin office.
It would be recalled that Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, against all expectations exited recession as its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 0.11% in the last quarter of 2020 (year on year).
Fagbemi noted that the country in practical terms is still battling recession as variables and indices of economic hardship are apparently with us in Nigeria.
“As of today, prices of goods and services are still very high. Farmers are unable to farm amid the activities of kidnappers and bandits. This has led to scarcity of farm produce in the market while the few available commodity is beyond the reach of common man.
“As you know a recession is a significant decline in general economic activity extending over a period of time. During that period, unemployment soars as real income declines.
“When the recession probability index has substantially decreased or the same indicator has peaked, the recession has likely ended. So in our case now, all these indicators and indices are still much with us.
“It is not yet time for celebration over exit out of recession. It is not over until it is over. Why would there be jubilation while farmers can’t go to farm because of the fear of being kidnapped. How do we get commodities at the market if all these challenge are much around?, ” he queried.
He added that business environment in Kwara State hasn’t been conducive as result of the pandemic and reason the planned Kwara trade fair was suspended.
“Prices of commodities in recent time has witnessed unprecedented hike. What you buy yesterday cannot be of same price today. Things are as hard as that, “the KWACIMA boss affirmed.
He, however, lauded the state government’s efforts toward reviving the moribund Bacita Sugar Company as he said if it becomes operational it will boost Kwara GDP.
“I think it is going to be a great economic relief if Bacita Sugar company is back to full operation by the last quarter of next year as gazetted by the Kwara State Government.
“There will be more employment, the Kwara economy will be buoyant as people will have work to do especially the graduands. Its resurgence would also increase the government Internally Generated Revenue (IGR). If that happens it is a plus to the state, “Fagbemi added.
By Mike Adeyemi