The latest Energy Information Administration data shows that the United States cut its imports of Nigerian crude oil by 60.37 percent to 1.93 million barrels in January this year. This is compared to the 4.87 million barrels bought in the same month in 2019. According to the report, The US imported 4.85 million barrels of crude from The West African country in December 2019, down from 6.33 million barrels in the previous month. Nigeria has been struggling to sell its crude oil cargoes following the crash in oil prices and demand as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The US had significantly reduced imports of Nigerian crude oil in the past few years as the oil produced in its shale operations is similar to the light sweet Nigerian crude. The rise of the US shale oil was already proving uniquely challenging for Nigeria as the boom from shale drastically cut Nigerian exports to the US. The US, at a times, was the destination for about 40-50 percent of Nigeria’s cargoes. The breakdown of the data showed that the US imports of Nigerian crude fell from 148.48 million barrels in 2012 to 87.40 million barrels in 2013 on the back of the shale oil boom. The country saw a further drop in US imports of its crude to 21.24 million barrels in 2014, when global oil prices started to fall from a peak of $115 per barrel. The EIA data said for the first time in decades, the US did not purchase any barrel of the Nigerian crude in July and August 2014 and June 2015. In 2010, the US bought as much as 358.92 million barrels from Nigeria but slashed its imports to 280.08 million barrels in 2011. The outlook may not be as bleak for Nigeria as the EIA has projected the US to become a net importer of crude oil and petroleum products in the Q3 2020 and remain a net importer in most months through the end of 2021.
Nigerians spent ₦4.598 trillion on food consumed outside the home, the National Bureau of Statistics has revealed. This is the highest share of expenditure on food and on general food and non-food expenditure in the country for the year 2019. Most of the nation’s expenditure came in from Lagos, Oyo, Delta, Rivers, and Kano states — making up 33.71 percent of total national expenditure, while Taraba, Ebonyi, Nasarawa, Yobe, and Gombe, account for less than five percent. The FCT and 31 states account for 66.29 percent of the nation’s spending. “At the national level the total household expenditure on food and non-food for 2019 was ₦40,207,388,459,367 (₦21,620,601,543,613.90 in 2009/10),” the NBS consumption expenditure report for 2019 read. “Of this total, 56.65% (60.2% in 2009/10) of total household expenditure in 2019 was spent on food with the balance of about 43.35% (39.8 % in 2009/10) spent on non- food items. Food consumed outside the home, followed by transportation costs and starchy roots, tubers and plantains were responsible for the largest proportion of household expenditure representing a combined 24.16 percent of total household expenditure in 2019. Lagos recorded the highest consumption expenditure at ₦5,068,032,243,934.00 or 12.6% of total household expenditure. Households nationwide spent ₦551.2 billion on non-alcoholic drinks, ₦205.5 billion on sugar, sweets and confectionery, and ₦150.3 billion on alcoholic drinks. The nation also spent more on fish and fish products (₦1.33 trillion) than it did on meat and its derivatives (₦1.19 trillion). According to NBS, Nigerians spent ₦2.59 trillion on transportation, while only ₦2.46 trillion was spent on healthcare. The households also spent ₦2.3 trillion on education — more than the federal budget assigned to the same in 2019. Nigerians also spent ₦197.6 billion on water.
Nigeria’s cross-border greenfield capital investment grew by 28 percent to $10.2 billion in 2019, a report by FDI Market Intelligence, a research unit of Financial Times has shown. Greenfield investments, the report said, are the type of foreign direct investment where a parent company creates a subsidiary in a different country, building its operations from the ground up. Foreign Companies, last year, executed 73 FDI projects in Nigeria, keeping the country among the top ten destinations for FDI projects in the Middle East and Africa. The report said FDI into Nigeria increased with regards to the number of FDI projects and capital investment by 35 percent and 28 percent, respectively. According to the Deputy Editor of fDi Magazine, Jacopo Dettoni, the volume of announced greenfield FDI projects globally was flat in 2019 compared with a year earlier, as their estimated capital investment fell by about 15 percent to $795.7 billion, but remained above the 2017 total of $651.1 billion as the FDI into renewable energy reached new highs in 2019, with total pledged investment estimated at $92.2 billion, second only to that of oil and gas at $123 billion. Africa attracted the highest ever volume of FDI projects as reform efforts in major economies both in North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa are paying dividends. The report noted that greenfield FDI remained stationary with the number of FDI projects reaching 15,558, compared to the 15,561 recorded in 2018. The FDI by number of projects in Africa grew by 49 percent to 998, compared with a 12 percent increase between 2017 and 2018. Egypt replaced South Africa as the second-ranked destination by projects in the region, having seen a 60 percent increase from 85 to 136 projects. There would be a 40 percent decline of greenfield FDIs in 2020, going by the impact of COVID-19 on the investment landscape, the CEO Henry Loewendahl said.
The Zambian government announced the closure of its common border with Tanzania as a spike in cases in its border areas weighs heavily on policymakers. On May 9, 76 new cases were reported in the border town of Nakonde. The president directed that with effect from Monday 11th May 2020, “there shall be no traffic in and out of Nakonde,” Health Minister Chitalu Chilufya announced at a COVID-19 press briefing on Sunday. The measure is to facilitate the roll-out of targeted interventions. During the time, immigration staff at the border will be trained and retrained on how to safely deal with the entry of persons and goods. Redeployments and reinforcements will also be undertaken, while Personal Protective Equipments and quarantine facilities and other key logistics will be reinforced with the view to protect the lives of officials and the people of the district, which is home to 75,135 people according to the 2000 Zambian Census. Zambia has 267 confirmed COVID-19 cases with 117 discharges and 7 deaths. Tanzania, on the other hand, has 509 cases, 21 deaths and 183 recoveries, according to John Hopkins University tallies. Tanzania’s overall response to the pandemic has been a mix of controversy. From president Magufuli casting doubts on the efficacy of test kits, refusal to implement measures such as curfew or lockdowns and reported cases of midnight burials.