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Africa reels after Nigeria demands a GDP recount Add to ...

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Apparently, Nigeria has discovered more than $200-billion (U.S.) of national wealth that it previously didn’t know existed, and the country’s chief statistical officer wants to tell you all about it. It sounds rather like an email scam, one of those farcical attempts to draw you into releasing your bank details with the promise to share untold riches of dubious provenance. In this case, however, the unexpected bounty is the nation’s GDP which has increased by 89 per cent to an estimated $510-billion in 2013 after a review of the basis on which GDP data is calculated. This entirely legitimate statistical exercise has not only revealed hidden strengths in the Nigerian economy in services, manufacturing and entertainment, but has relegated South Africa to the status of also-ran in the contest for the continent’s biggest economy.

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