The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has affirmed Nigeria as the biggest economy in Africa — ahead of South Africa and Egypt, despite the country’s current economic recession.
In August 2016, Nigeria was reported to have lost its spot as Africa’s biggest economy to South Africa, following the recalculation of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
“Based on gross domestic product at the end of 2015 published by the International Monetary Fund, the size of South Africa’s economy is $301 billion at the rand’s current exchange rate, while Nigeria’s GDP is $296 billion,” Bloomberg had reported in August.
But latest estimates from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) however put Nigeria’s GDP at $415.080 billion, from $493.831 billion at the end of 2015.
The IMF World Economic Outlook for October 2016 puts South Africa’s GDP at $280.367 billion, from $314.732 billion a year earlier.
The North African country Egypt’s 2016 data was reported as not available, but its 2015 size remained at $330.159 while that of Algeria, one of the largest economies on the continent, was put at $168.318 billion.
The United States, China and Japan maintained their spots as the largest economies in the world, with a GDP of $18.561 trillion, $11.391 trillion and $4.73 trillion respectively.
These countries are being trailed by Germany, United Kingdom and France in that order.
The Managing Director of the IMF, Christine Lagarde, said at the just concluded World Bank/IMF meetings that global growth had been too slow for too long.
“We continue to face the problem of global growth being too low for too long, benefiting too few,”
The world expects an economic growth of 3.1 percent in 2016, reviewed from 3.4 percent.
The IMF had also initially predicted that the Nigerian economy will grow by 0.6% in 2017, effectively lifting the country out of an officially declared recession.