Minister of industry, trade and investment, Okechukwu Enelamah, has reiterated the commitment of the Buhari Administration on the promotion of the Ease of Doing Business in Nigeria.
He maintained that the Presidential Enabling Environment Council (PEBEC) launched in 2016 by this government had been working assiduously to remove constrain and bottlenecks in doing business in Nigeria, which was beginning to yield positive results.
He declared this in his opening address at the 10th National Council On Industry, Trade and Investment recently held at Umuahia, Abia State, with the theme: “Ease of Doing Business in Nigeria: The Role of States and Local Governments.”
Enelamah stated, “The theme was consciously adopted as the focus of our deliberations at this meeting because of the need to consolidate gains already recorded in the sector.
This is also in line with the overall vision of our Ministry to promote economic growth, create jobs and generate wealth, a vision we are pursuing vigorously through the mandate given to us by the President, to create the right enabling environment to stimulate domestic investment and attract foreign direct investment in all sectors of the economy. ‘Our dream is to make Nigeria the most preferred investment destination in the Continent.”
The minister further stressed the aptness of the theme within the context (and content) of the goals of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) of the present Administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The ERGP focuses on three strategic objectives: restoring growth, investing in the people and building a competitive economy. Creating an enabling environment for business transactions and investment would undoubtedly lead to economic diversification, which is another key objective of ERGP and this administration.
“That is why we are focused on creating the right environment and making it progressively easier to do business in Nigeria,” said minister.
The Minister assured the council members that PEBEC chaired by Vice President Yemi Osibajo, meet regularly to ensure coordination across Ministries and to resolve challenges. He further highlighted some of the remarkable achievements so far made by the council in promoting Ease of Doing Business in Nigeria; the Council has completed 360day National Action plans on these reforms, some of which relate to visa on arrival, airport infrastructure, consolidated arrival and departure forms amongst others.
Technologies were deployed to improve service delivery in the Ministries in the areas of Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) platform, digitizing and simplifying the provision of Government services examples includes Commercial Law Department in the Ministry, digitizing one stop investment Centre and pioneer status incentives processes at the Nigeria Investment Promotion Council (NIPC).
The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has commenced the process of speedy registration of companies through on line platform and the external hosting of the Company Registration Portal (CPR) to ensure seamless operation of the Company Registration Portal. According to the Minister “we have witnessed a steady improvement in provision of services to the public, business registration in Nigeria can now be concluded within 48 hours with the automated platforms.”
To further demonstrate the commitment of the present Administration under Muhammadu Buhari the first Executive Order (E001) signed into law in 2017 to ensure transparency, default approvals in cases of unnecessary delays, emphasis on the principle One Government to ensure inter- agency cooperation, entry experiences of travelers and visitors to ensure visas are issued within 48 hours; and increasing the efficiency of Port operations by ensuring agencies at the ports harmonize their operations.
Enelamah also declared that the focus of Federal Government now is partnering with the States to initiate and deepen sub- national reforms. States and Local Governments are expected to complement these efforts at their respective levels by coming up with relevant reforms on the issue, knowing fully well that the real impact of the Enabling Environment and Ease of Doing Business Reforms must be felt on ground at States and Local Government levels.
Tags: Nigeria trade