Dr Titus Okunrounmu, former Director, Budget Department of Central Bank of Nigeria, has advised the Federal Government to borrow money to repair the nation’s refineries to boost economic activities.
Okunrounmu gave the advice in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria in Ota, Ogun, on Tuesday.
He spoke against the backdrop of the Monetary Policy Committee’s decision to retain all key rate indicators of the economy.
NAN reports that Godwin Emefiele, CBN Governor, on Tuesday, said the Monetary Policy Committee would be retaining the Monetary Policy Rate at 13.5 per cent, Cash Reserve Ratio at 22.5 per cent and Liquidity Ratio at 30 per cent.
The former CBN director noted that the nation’s economy had been facing serious problems since the U.S. stopped buying 40 per cent of its petroleum product.
Okunrounmu explained that the nation could not have stable economy in a situation where it was exporting crude oil and importing refined petroleum products back to the country.
He said “The apex bank can only consider the fiscal and monetary policies in addressing some of the nation’s problems, but it does not have power to fix exchange rate of the country.”
Okunrounmu opined that borrowing money to repair the nation’s refineries and stopping importation of refined products would help the country to conserve huge foreign exchange.
He said: “The improved foreign earning will assist the country to use the revenues to develop other sectors of the economy and create job opportunities for the youth.”
Okunrounmu cautioned the federal government that such borrowed funds should be used for the intended purposes.
The former CBN director also urged FG to spend more funds on productive sector to ensure price stability and reduce dependence on foreign goods.
He added that spending more on the productive sector and repairing nation’s refineries would drastically end bringing refined petroleum products to the country.
According to him, the measures will make the country’s currency to be strong as well as lead to stronger economy.