NIPSS Seeks CBN Collaboration for 12% GDP Growth

Nigeria’s foremost policy think-tank, the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), has urged Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) leadership to achieve a 12 percent annual GDP growth over the next five years.

Professor Ayo Omotayo, director-general of NIPSS, made the call during a visit to the CBN by participants of the institute’s Senior Executive Course Programme, Study Group 6.

Omotayo said: “We at NIPSS believe that we can do 12 percent growth of our economy, GDP growth, year in and year out for the next five years if we are serious about it. If it’s going to work the CBN is very critical in ensuring that it works, a whole lot of what is going to happen in Nigeria in the next five years depends on how successful CBN drives everything.”

The NIPSS director-general added: “CBN for us at NIPSS is like the man holding the screwdriver, he has a whole lot of screws, a whole lot of things it can screw together because he is the only one that holds the screwdriver.

“We at the Institute believe that the CBN, because of its own regulatory role has a whole lot of importance on the matter of the digital economy, after everything runs digitally we need to be able to pay people digitally, move money digitally, we are asking ourselves that how many things can we move digitally. The more of our activities we can put in digital format, the more we get the opportunity to provide access to a whole lot of the 120 million active Nigerians.”

NIPSS, Omotayo said came to the CBN to seek to understand how digitalization could drive financial inclusion for all Nigerians, considering existing literacy challenges and out-of-school children.

Professor Omotayo envisioned a future where “almost every service can be delivered digitally,” including healthcare.

He presented a thought-provoking scenario where medicine purchases could be linked to a user’s phone and even pharmacology delivered electronically.

Responding to NIPSS’s call for collaboration, CBN governor, Yemi Cardoso, represented by the Deputy Governor, Corporate Services Dr. Bala M. Bello, acknowledged Nigeria’s rapidly evolving digital landscape.

He emphasised the importance of NIPSS’s study, stating, “A critical study of this nature is imperative in unveiling the huge potential of digitalization towards contributing to sustainable job creation and youth empowerment.”

Cardoso reiterated the CBN’s commitment to leveraging digital technologies for financial inclusion, productivity growth, and fostering an environment for innovation and entrepreneurship. He concluded by highlighting the alignment between NIPSS’s chosen theme and the CBN’s core priorities.

The CBN governor assured members of the NIPSS that “as a forward-thinking central bank, we are committed to harnessing the power of digital technologies to enhance financial inclusion, boost productivity, and create an enabling environment for innovation and entrepreneurship to thrive.

“The Bank has also deployed robust digital technologies in driving most of its processes towards achieving optimal performance. Thus, your chosen theme deeply resonates with the core priorities and strategic focus of the CBN.”