Osinbajo says weaker dollar may not hurt the economy

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Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said on Thursday that a weaker U.S. dollar did not necessarily hurt the country’s economy.

The comments by Osinbajo were made after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin welcomed a weaker dollar, saying it benefited U.S. trade balances in the short term.

OPEC member Nigeria is Africa’s largest oil producer. Crude oil sales make up two-thirds of Nigeria’s government revenues and most of its foreign exchange earnings.

“A weaker dollar doesn’t necessarily hurt Nigeria,” said Osinbajo, speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

“We are concerned most about ensuring that we are able to make our own exports cheaper and we working on all of that. Our major concern is how to make ourselves more competitive,” he added.

Attacks on energy facilities in the southern oil-producing Niger Delta region pushed Africa’s biggest economy into recession in 2016, which was its first in 25 years.

Niger Delta Avengers, the group which claimed responsibility for most of the attacks, last week said it would resume attacks within days.

“We are in constant consultation with all groups in the Niger Delta,” said Osinbajo, when asked about the government’s response to the latest threat.

The country’s recovery since emerging from recession in the second quarter of 2017 has largely been driven by crude oil sales.

Agency Report