Country Forecast Nigeria May 2018

Country Forecast Nigeria May 2018

  • May 2018 •
  • Report ID: 360656 •
  • Format: PDF

Policy towards private enterprise and competition

2018-19: Progress on market-oriented reforms remains slow, given various vested interests and inefficiencies.

2020-22: The administration formed after the 2019 elections makes more assertive steps towards improving the environment for the non-oil private sector, although the reform process remains beset by inefficiency.

Policy towards foreign investment

2018-19: Confusion over oil sector reform creates ongoing uncertainty for investors. The government favours local companies in oil sector deals.

2020-22: Clearer policy lines help to stem the trend of lower investment in the oil and gas sectors, but ongoing mistrust between the numerous stakeholders prevents any major upturn in foreign direct investment. Meanwhile, modest liberalisation opens up greater non-oil opportunities.

Foreign trade and exchange controls

2018-19: Ongoing restrictions on end-users of hard currency mean that a premium between the official and black-market rates persists. Protectionist sentiment continues to delay regional and global trade deals.

2020-22: Political upheaval around the 2019 elections and ongoing nationalistic sentiment delay reforms that would make trading across borders easier.


2018-19: Focus intensifies on boosting tax compliance, especially given weak prospects for oil revenue. Retroactive measures become a possibility, although the business community would fight these.

2020-22: Tax rates for the oil and gas sector increase under new legislation. Efforts to increase value-added tax (VAT) and to move more of the informal economy into the formal sector see non-oil collection also improve.


2018-19: The weakness of the banking sector (given wider economic troubles) restricts the local availability of financing.

2020-22: Funding for well-planned projects becomes easier to raise domestically once the 2019 elections are concluded, as local capital markets deepen (with greater foreign participation) and the banking sector develops.

The labour market

2018-19: Employers face major problems, including a shortage of skilled manual workers, restrictive visa regulations and poor health indicators.

2020-22: Employers continue to struggle to find suitably qualified staff.


2018-19: Government spending on the priority area of infrastructure hits capacity constraints. Although there should be growth in private-sector investment, the government struggles to create an encouraging environment.

2020-22: Expenditure on infrastructure increases, but project implementation is slow and beset by corruption

Technological readiness

2018-19: Although Nigeria continues to have a vibrant technology sector for an economy at its stage of development, prospects for growth remain limited by weak infrastructure outside urban hubs.

2020-22: Research spending is likely to remain low compared with global averages, but some home-grown technology firms looking to adapt global technology trends to the Nigerian market continue to do well.


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