The FG has shifted this year’s Population and Housing Census from 29 March to May. Information and Culture Minister Lai Mohammed said the census was rescheduled following the governorship and Houses of Assembly elections’ postponement by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from 11 March to 18 March. Mohammed announced the new date while addressing State House correspondents after a Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja. The minister also said the council had approved ₦2.8 billion for the National Population Commission (NPC) to buy essential software for the conduct of the headcount.
Nigeria’s inflation rate rose to 21.91 percent in February 2023, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). The urban inflation rate on a year-on-year basis in February 2023 was 22.78 percent; while the rural inflation rate in February 2023 was 21.10 percent on a year-on-year basis. The food inflation rate in February 2023 was 24.35 percent on a year-on-year basis, which was attributed to “increases in prices of oil and fat, bread and cereals, potatoes, yam and other tubers, fish, fruits, meat, vegetable and food products.” The NBS further stated that the “All items less farm produce” stood at 18.84 percent, which in February 2023, on a year-on-year basis, was highest in Bauchi (24.59 percent), Rivers (24.40 percent) and Ondo (24.27 percent), while Sokoto (18.90 percent), Borno (18.94 percent) and Cross River (19.62 percent) recorded the slowest rise.
Ghana’s consumer inflation slowed to 52.8 percent year-on-year in February 2023 from 53.6 percent in January, which reflected a stable cedi and falling international oil prices, the statistics service said. Food-price growth eased for the first time in more than a year to 59.1 percent in February from 61 percent in January 2023, while non-food inflation remained at 47.9 percent. On a monthly basis, consumer prices rose 1.9 percent in February, after increasing by 1.7 percent in January. The Ghana National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has announced the removal of fuel and energy subsidies in the country as part of its implemented regulatory measures to ensure stability across its downstream sector. The decision was communicated by the NPA Chief Executive Officer, Abdul Hamid, during a presentation at the ongoing African Refiners and Distributors week 2023 in Cape Town. He explained that industries were shutting down because the government found it hard to provide subsidies and that today the industry is being powered by investments in the private sector. Hamid revealed that the NPA has installed fuel caps for the first time in 30 years to intervene and control market instability.
Zambia is working hard with its creditors so that a debt restructuring can be agreed by March-end or shortly afterwards, Finance Minister Situmbeko Musokotwane said. China, Zambia’s largest bilateral creditor, was engaged in the debt restructuring with bilateral engagements on an almost weekly basis, he added. Zambia’s external debt stood at $14.87 billion at the end of June 2022, the minister has previously said. Chinese lenders accounted for almost $6 billion of debt at the end of 2021, according to government data. In July 2022, Zambia’s government cancelled $2 billion in undisbursed loans, of which about three-quarters were Chinese. China has publicly expressed its support for Zambia’s debt restructuring, while also calling for multilateral lenders like the World Bank to offer struggling countries debt relief.