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Wednesday, 23 May 2018

'Our foreign reserve has risen to 47.5 billion USD as of May 2018' - President Buhari



President Buhari while giving a keynote address during the 17th Productivity Order of Merit Award in Abuja on Tuesday said, 'Nigeria's foreign reserve has risen to 47.5 billion USD as of May 2018 as against 29.6 billion USD in May 2015'.

He added that, 'the inflation rate declined from a peak of 18.7 percent in January 2017 to 12.4 percent in April 2018, making it the 15th consecutive month of deceleration. The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) recovered after five quarters of continuous contraction, recording positive growths of 0.7, 1.4, and 1.9 percent in quarters two, three and four of 2017, respectively, and signaling an exit from the recession'.

See his full speech below...
PROTOCOLS:
It is a great pleasure to be here with you today on the occasion of the 17th National Productivity Day celebration and Conferment of National Productivity Order of Merit Award on selected individuals and corporate organizations who have not only excelled and distinguished themselves in their various fields, but have also contributed immensely to our developmental efforts.
2. The observance of the National Productivity Day today nationwide is an indication of our firm belief in the cardinal role of productivity in the development and growth of our national economy.
3. I am particularly delighted at the choice of this year’s theme: “Productivity for Economic Recovery and Sustainable Growth”, which is very relevant and appropriate at this time of our national life and present economic realities.
4. The benefits of increasing productivity are extremely far reaching. Productivity is the single most fundamental determinant of rapid economic growth and development. Increased productivity improves the economy, lifts people out of poverty and enhances their living standards.
5. As you are already aware, our country witnessed a tough economic period of recession attributed mainly to overdependence on single export commodity as well as the unprecedented looting of the treasury. With our determined efforts, we were able to exit recession. The challenge before us now is how to sustain the recovery and ensure growth.
6. The Economic Recovery and Growth Plan of this Administration targets a 7% growth rate by 2020, driven by strong non-oil sector growth in agriculture, solid minerals, manufacturing, information technology and services. Our aim is to CHANGE our narratives from an import dependent, consumption driven and undiversified economy to a producing nation where we grow what we eat and consume what we made. Our effort in this regard is beginning to pay off as most indices by which an economy could be measured are looking bright.
7. Our foreign reserve has risen to 47.5 billion USD as of 18 May 2018, as against 29.6 billion USD in May 2015. The inflation rate declined from a peak of 18.7 percent in January 2017 to 12.4 percent in April 2018, making it the 15th consecutive month of deceleration. The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) recovered after five quarters of continuous contraction, recording positive growths of 0.7, 1.4, and 1.9 percent in quarters two, three and four of 2017, respectively, and signaling an exit from the recession.
8. I am delighted that this pace of recovery has been maintained in 2018 with recent GDP growth of 1.95 percent reported for the first quarter of this year. We have also recorded significant stability in the Naira-Dollar Exchange Rate, in addition to over 21 billion USD of new inflows into the Foreign Exchange Market through the establishment of the Investors and Exporters FX Window.
9. The implementation of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) have stopped the pilfering of the Treasury. Billions of Naira have been saved from maintenance fees payable to banks. 200 billion Naira has also been saved from the elimination of ghost workers in the public service. We have also made steady progress in our diversification programme especially in Agriculture and Mining.
10. The goal of this Administration is to move Nigeria forward to become a strong, strategic and proactive state through a deliberate, pragmatic and productivity conscious programme of action. We want to rebuild Nigeria into a competitive, virile, strong and productive economy; a state whose citizens are creative, innovative, responsive, accountable, incorruptible, patriotic and diligent.
11. The public service as the organ of Government responsible for the formulation and implementation of government policies has a critical role to play in this new dispensation. It is my intention to hold the public servants collectively and individually responsible for the planning and implementation of the programmes of this Administration.
12. From now on, it will no longer be “business as usual”. Excellence will be rewarded and mediocrity will not be tolerated. In this regard, I am directing all Ministries, Departments and Agencies to drive the CHANGE Agenda in the public sector.
13. The National Productivity Centre is encouraged to carry out its mandate so as to ensure a productive nation.
14. Corruption is an anathema to productivity growth of any economy. We must leave no stone unturned in tackling the monster. Corruption is dangerous and cancerous to the nation, we are therefore resolute in our commitment to fight it in all facets of our national life.
15. This Administration is committed to rewarding hardwork and excellence. It is in this regard that we have placed great premium on the National Productivity Order of Merit Award as an award of honour and dignity. We have therefore been consistent in the yearly conferment of the award on deserving Nigerians and organizations.
16. The government has approved the conferment of the National Productivity Order of Merit Award for 2018 on few individuals and organizations who have been adjudged to have performed exceedingly well in their various endeavours:
17. Let me congratulate the National Productivity Order of Merit Awardees for their remarkable feats and this well-deserved honour. This award is indeed a recognition by your fatherland. It should therefore propel and motivate you for greater achievements.
18. I commend the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, Chairman and members of the National Productivity Order of Merit Award Committee including the management and staff of National Productivity Centre for a painstaking assignment in choosing this few among the numerous qualified persons.
19. Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, before I end this keynote address, it is imperative to remind ourselves of the cardinal role of productivity to national economic growth. As the recovery in our economy gathers momentum, there is need for every Nigerian to develop a productive mindset for continuous improvement. This would ensure total recovery and sustainable growth in all sectors of our economy.
Thank you and God bless.
INDIVIDUALS AWARDEES:
Mrs. Mary Joshua Gadi
Engr. Umar Buba Bindir Ph.D
Hon. Allamin Umana Lawan
Engr. Anebi Joseph Garba
Dr. Abdul Hussein
David James Lalu
Mrs. Winfred Ekanem Oyo-Ita FCA
Dr. Jones Yerinbuluemi Stow
Mazi Sam Ohuabunwa OFR
Clement CHukwuma Nwogbo
David Iheanyi Onyemata
Dr. Tina Aduke Olayemi
Mr. victor Folasele Olajorin
Dr. somade Taofeek Osuolale
Engr. Dozie Mbanefo
ORGANIZATIONAL AWARDEES
Farm Crowdy Nig. Ltd.
Fresh Direct Nigeria 
May and Baker Nigeria Plc
Alo Aluminum Manufacturing Company Ltd, Enugu
Seven up Bottling Company.
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