The World Bank has disclosed that it is expecting the global economy to rebound by 4% and forecasted that Nigeria’s economy will resume at 1.1% in 2021.
The World Bank in its January 2021 global economic prospects said: “The global economy is expected to expand 4% in 2021, assuming an initial COVID-19 vaccine rollout becomes widespread throughout the year.
“A recovery, however, will likely be subdued, unless policymakers move decisively to tame the pandemic and implement investment-enhancing reforms.”
Speaking about the global economy, World Bank Group President, David Malpass, said: “While the global economy appears to have entered a subdued recovery, policymakers face formidable challenges — in public health, debt management, budget policies, central banking and structural reforms — as they try to ensure that this still fragile global recovery gains traction and sets a foundation for robust growth.
“To overcome the impacts of the pandemic and counter the investment headwind, there needs to be a major push to improve business environments, increase labour and product market flexibility, and strengthen transparency and governance.”
The organisation also noted that the 2020 economic fallout was slightly less severe than previously projected, citing shallower contractions in advanced economies and a more robust recovery in China.
The bank explained that Nigeria’s economy was estimated to have contracted 4.1% in 2020, as the effects of the pandemic impacted economic activities in all sectors, even across the region.
It said: “In South Africa, where economic activity was on weak footing before COVID-19, output is estimated to have fallen 7.8% last year.
“The country suffered the most severe outbreak of the pandemic in the region and underwent strict lockdowns that brought the economy to a standstill.”
Speaking about oil exporters in the region, the World Bank said they have grappled with sharply lower prices, however, contractions in agricultural commodity exporters were less steep.
The organisation said: “Growth in the region is forecast to rebound moderately to 2.7% in 2021. Growth in Nigeria is expected to resume at 1.1% in 2021.
“Activity is nevertheless anticipated to be dampened by low oil prices, OPEC quotas, falling public investment due to weak government revenues, constrained private investment due to firm failures, and subdued foreign investor confidence.
“In South Africa, growth is expected to rebound to 3.3% in 2021. An expectation of weak growth momentum reflects the lingering effects of the pandemic and the likelihood that some mitigation measures will need to remain in place.”