Nahimah Ajikanle Nurudeen
The Federal Government has announced its intention to boost local production with the introductions of tax breaks and export incentives.
The minister of industry, trade and investment, Okechukwu E Enelamah, highlights government’s plan to boost economy in interview with Oxford Business Group (OBG).
According to him, a key trade facilitation agreement (TFA) signed by Nigeria and more than 100 other nations with the World Trade Organisation is expected to provide the country’s manufacturing industry with a major boost.
Commenting in a wide-ranging interview with the global research and consultancy firm, Enelamah said the “milestone” TFA should ease the overall cost of doing business in Nigeria, which he acknowledged was one of three main obstacles that manufacturers currently faced.
“The biggest challenge is definitely infrastructure, in one form or another. In addition, manufacturers need more access to sustainable, affordable and reliable power – that’s our first priority as a government and as a ministry,” he acknowledged. “Each of these areas represents an opportunity to take the country higher and to fulfil our potential.”
The full interview with Enelamah will appear in The Report: Nigeria 2017, OBG’s forthcoming publication on the country’s economy.
The Report: Nigeria 2017 will be a vital guide to the many facets of the country, including its macroeconomics, infrastructure, banking and other sectoral developments.
The publication will contain a detailed, sector-by-sector guide for investors, alongside contributions from leading personalities. It will be available in print and online.
Enelamah said that creating an attractive environment for manufacturers through measures such as tax breaks, export incentives and finance, was high on the government’s agenda in line with its broader aim of increasing local production.
“Producers need assurance that if they produce locally, their products will enter the local value chain, and we have created the conditions for that,” he told OBG. “We are also working to avoid dumping, as entrepreneurs that are producing high-quality products cannot compete with imports that are cheaper and of lower quality.”
Nigeria’s plans for boosting foreign direct investment levels are also outlined in the interview. “We want to improve the supply of foreign currency through funding programmes that will bring billions of dollars into the economy,” Enelamah told OBG. “We are also reorganising and revamping the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission. Ultimately, we are aiming to create the confidence that investors need to come to Nigeria.”
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