A renowned financial expert, Dr. Titus Okunrounmu, has called on the Federal Government to intensify efforts toward resuscitating the nation’s refineries to boost the economy.
Okunrounmu, also a former Director, Budgeting Department of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Ota, Ogun.
He said that the step would reduce the subsidy being paid by the Federal Government on petroleum products.
The former CBN director was reacting to the price of crude oil being sold above 70.7 dollars per barrel at the international market on Thursday.
He said there was need to speedily repair the nation’s refineries rather than looking at the price of crude oil that was being traded above 70.7 dollars per barrel.
“The Federal Government needs to expedite actions in repairing the nation’s refineries to stimulate the economy.
“When the country develops its refineries, this would help the nation to be able to supply domestic demands from whatever we produced and refined, and sold the balance to the outside world.
“Selling the balance to the outside world would enable the country to have a good balance receipt,’’ he said.
Okunrounmu said that there was a need to stop exporting crude oil and in return bring in refined products.
He said some of the funds generated from selling to other countries could be used to develop other sectors of the economy, which would drive the diversification policy of the Federal Government.
The expert said there was the need for the government to spend more funds on capital projects that would galvanize the economic growth and reduce the unemployment rate, and as well stem the nation’s inflation.