Oil only accounts for about 15 percent of the GDP of Africa’s biggest economy, but it makes up 75-80 percent of government revenues. Government finances have been hammered by a near halving of world oil prices since June last year.
“The budget seeks to protect the average Nigerian and you know that the key is that we focus on diversification of the economy,” said the Minister. “This budget points to the fact that this country is a non-oil country and I think we want Nigerians to begin to think of the country in that way.”
Yet efforts to diversify over the years have had mixed results, and oil dependency is seen as the Nigerian economy’s biggest systemic flaw.