The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says Nigeria faces a six-year delay in achieving its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Kristalina Georgieva, IMF managing director, made this known in her remarks at the UN high level political forum on sustainable-development, on Tuesday.
Georgieva said the decision of policymakers across the world resulted in an increase in the IMF global growth forecast to six percent in 2021 and four percent in 2022.
She said despite the increased growth projection, countries are facing a set back in the path to accomplishing the SDGs.
The IMF MD noted that enormous challenges are faced by all countries with high vulnerabilities, adding that “achieving the SDGs will be even more challenging after the pandemic”.
“To be more specific, what we are assessing is that the financing needs of the SDGs will increase by an average annual 2½ percentage points of GDP, or almost $60 billion per year for all low income countries,” she said.
“In other words, the road to travel has become tougher. Enormous challenges are faced by all countries with high vulnerabilities.
“In Nigeria, for instance, because of the pandemic, the country faces a six-year delay in achieving its SDGs. In Rwanda, it is five years.”
The IMF MD called for increased mobilisation across countries for pro-growth structural reforms, supported by more fiscal capacity through domestic resource mobilization.
She added that there should be improved private sector engagement to boost achievement of SDGs.
“We believe we can work on reforms to lift tax collection by 5 percentage points of GDP so we can have more capacity to meet the aspirations of people in countries where we are still falling behind,” she said.
“Reforms that support a favorable business climate can help spur private sector investment in development.
“And let me be clear, transformative reforms require the world to stand by countries that are facing this risk of falling behind. And this is where the international community has a tremendous responsibility to step up.”