>> Good morning, Mr. President.>> Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari is set to present his 2017 budget to parliament for its approval. That's the first step towards it becoming law. My name is Alexis Akwagyiram. I'm a senior Reuters Nigeria correspondent and I'm reporting from Balogun Market in the commercial capital, Lagos.
Many people are preparing for Christmas. They're looking to buy hampers. They're looking to buy gifts for their loved ones. The problem is that the cost of living has skyrocketed compared with this time last year. Inflation is at an 11 year high of 18.3%. And many of the people in Africa's most populous country are now struggling to make ends meet.
This is a country where some 70% of its inhabitants live on less than a dollar a day. Life was already hard, and now, it's getting much, much harder. And many people point to Buhari's policies. For example, they cite the currency restrictions imposed by the central bank but very vocally supported by Buhari, which they say has led to a dollar scarcity.
Now that's crucial because this is very much import driven economy. Buhari's government says that this recession is largely due to low oil prices. This is an OPEC country that relies on crude oil sales for around two-thirds of government revenue. The plan being unveiled by Buhari is a 7.2 trillion naira budget.
That's roughly equivalent to $24 billion. Now with that, Buhari plans to improve infrastructure. Improve roads, improve rail, and improve power provision as well. And he says that all of this can be done through boosting capital spending. Part of that will be through external borrowing. Now, there's an open letter that's gone viral on social media and that letter is simple.
It says, people in Nigeria are no longer looking for brand solutions, they're not looking for a massive economic vision. All they want is for Buhari to bring the country back to where it was before he came to power.