Godwin Emefiele, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said the country must improve on its production capacity to boost its flailing economy.
Emefiele said the local currency, naira, has potential to compete favourably with foreign currencies but Nigeria must return to production of goods and services for it to materialise.
As it stands, Nigeria’s local consumption is hugely dependent on imported products and Emefiele said this won’t help the economy.
He spoke on Saturday at a one-day interactive enlightenment session by the North West Zonal Stakeholders. He was represented by the Assistant Director of Corporate Communication of Nigeria’s apex bank, Sam Okogbue.
The stakeholders were drawn from Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, and other Northwestern states in Nigeria.
Emefiele said that the CBN had in the past put up measures to check foreign consumption in the country.
“What we are saying is that Nigerians should go back to production and that we should also abridge our insatiable taste for foreign goods so that we can stabilise our exchange rates,” he said.
“In Nigeria, we don’t produce much. I come from East, most of our fathers were trained, institutions were built with palm oil. The University of Nigeria, Nnsuka was a product of palm kernel and palm oil. Can we do so now?”
Mr. Emefiele added that it is not enough to condemn the naira as worthless, while local productions is low.
“It is not only to express an emotive passion about the fact that naira is worthless vis-à-vis other currencies but it is also a moment for sober reflection that are we really producing anything? The answer is no.
“Nigerians should moderate their consumption of foreign goods. If we do so, it will help the government to stabilise the economy. The more lasting sustainable measure is to produce what we eat.”