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Business News of Sunday, 15 January 2023


6 economic challenges waiting for next president as Buhari prepares to leave office

The photo used to illustrate the story The photo used to illustrate the story

As Nigerians prepare to vote for their preferred candidates to succeed president Muhammdu Buhari the issues that lie ahead are worrisome.

Bloomberg in a new report has provided further insights on the issues pointing out that whoever wins is expected to inherit a lot of burdening economic problems.

The concerns raised include repayment of debts, fiscal deficit, crude oil production, poverty, unemployment rate, and inflation.

Others are skilled Nigerian youths leaving the country, insecurity, external reserves, and slow economic growth.

Here are the six challenges waiting for Nigeria’s next president

Heavy debt repayment

Data from the Budget Office of the federation show that every year since 2015, the federal government has spent more money servicing debt.

The trend is expected to continue in 2023, judging by the 2023 budget which shows that the government is budgeted to spend N6.31 trillion on debt servicing, 75 percent higher than the amount in the 2022 budget and 50 percent more than the actual amount spent in 2021.

More so, the Debt Management Office revealed that Nigeria's debt will hit as high as N77 trillion by June 2023, one month after the next president assumes office.

Revenue problem

Nigeria has struggled to meet its budgeted oil production over the years due to oil theft, and pipeline vandalism, and in 2022, it lost its status to Angola as the largest oil producer for six months straight due to rampant crude oil theft, according to OPEC.

Over 130 million poor Nigerians will be waiting for the next president

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) recently released its Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) report which it stated that 133 million Nigerians are multidimensionally poor. It said of the total 133 million, 86 million affected persons live in the North while nearly 47 million live in the southern part of the country.

Unemployment Rate

In the fourth quarter of 2020, the country's unemployment rate jumped to 33%. Although unemployment figures for 2021 have not yet been revealed, the Presidential Economic Advisory Committee predicted that the rate had risen to 40%.

Rising Inflation

The country’s inflation rate hit its highest in 17 years in July of 2022 at 19.64 percent and has persistently risen to 21.47 percent as of November 2022, further fueling the cost-of-living crisis currently eroding the country.


Nigerians have increasingly exited the country in search of greener pastures, resulting in a shortage of skilled workers in many workplaces and making it harder for businesses to acquire the talent they want.