Nigerian Statistics Office Delays Rebased GDP Data to October

The Nigerian statistics office postponed the release of rebased gross domestic product figures because more information needs to be gathered on some sectors, the head of the agency said.

“There are two or three sectors that we need to get a bit more information about to ensure the numbers are as credible as possible,” Yemi Kale of the National Bureau of Statistics said by phone yesterday from Abuja, the capital. Those include non-profit organizations and the mining industry, he said. About 70 percent of the work has been done, he said.

Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer, is updating its GDP base year to 2010 to give a better indication of the size of the economy. The West African country’s GDP is currently based on spending patterns in 1990. The updated data, which are now set to be released Oct. 24, will probably boost the size of the Nigerian economy, according to the statistics bureau.

The statistics office has postponed the release of the data at least twice before, citing funding constraints. It was expected to be ready in the first quarter of this year, Kale said on Nov. 20.

Nigeria’s economy, estimated by the International Monetary Fund at $272.6 billion last year, is forecast to expand 6.5 percent this year, according to the national budget presented by President Goodluck Jonathan to lawmakers on Oct. 10.

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