Nigeria is classified as a mixed economy emerging market, and has already reached middle income status according to the Worldbank, with its abundant supply of natural resources, well-developed financial, legal, communications, transport sectors and stock exchange (the Nigerian Stock Exchange), which is the second largest in Africa. Nigeria is ranked 31st in the world in terms of GDP (PPP) as of 2011. Nigeria is the United States' largest trading partner in sub-Saharan Africa and supplies a fifth of its oil (11% of oil imports). It has the seventh-largest trade surplus with the U.S. of any country worldwide. Nigeria is currently the 50th-largest export market for U.S. goods and the 14th-largest exporter of goods to the U.S. The United States is the country's largest foreign investor. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) projected economic growth of 9% in 2008 and 8.3% in 2009. The IMF further projects a 8% growth in the Nigerian economy in 2011.
February 2011: According to Citigroup, Nigeria will get the highest average GDP growth in the world between 2010–2050. Nigeria is one of two countries from Africa among 11 Global Growth Generators countries.
Previously, economic development had been hindered by years of military rule, corruption, and mismanagement. The restoration of democracy and subsequent economic reforms have successfully put Nigeria back on track towards achieving its full economic potential. It is now the second largest economy in Africa (following South Africa), and the largest economy in the West Africa Region.
During the oil boom of the 1970s, Nigeria accumulated a significant foreign debt to finance major infrastructural investments. With the fall of oil prices during the 1980s oil glut Nigeria struggled to keep up with its loan payments and eventually defaulted on its principal debt repayments, limiting repayment to the interest portion of the loans. Arrears and penalty interest accumulated on the unpaid