The Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines, and Agriculture, NACCIMA told the Federal Government to devise urgent steps that will curb the alarming cost of doing business in the country.
NACCIMA President, John Udeagbala, said this during the association’s quarterly economic outlook press conference which was held in Lagos.
While urging the Federal Government to do away with policies that cause bottlenecks to business investments, Udeagbala said there were many critical issues that will help to position the economy for foreign direct investment and encourage local investors to establish industries that would enhance job creation and improve GDP if addressed urgently.
Speaking concerning consistent increase in headline inflation, the NACCIMA president said thinking that the rising cost of food prices can easily be controlled by adjustment to the monetary policy rate is preposterous. He said that the multiple exchange rates of the Central Bank of Nigeria, stringent policy bottlenecks in obtaining foreign exchange and the security challenges posed to farmers and rural dwellers led to inflation.
Udeagbala said, “These factors need to be urgently addressed if inflation must be nipped in the bud. Fiscal policies and public expenditure controls at various government levels during this electioneering period will add to keep inflationary rate in checks.
“Furthermore, it will also be more impactful on the economy for the implementation of the Central Bank of Nigeria interventions in the Agriculture, Manufacturing, Energy, Healthcare and Export sectors. This will further ensure inclusive growth and development of Nigerian economy.”
He further said that it has now become very glaring that Nigeria’s debt as at today is high and unsustainable given the downward turn of government revenue. Admitting that despite the shortfalls of revenue, government’s expenditure (debt and non-debt) remained high while the much-needed capital expenditure continued to suffer serious declines over the last two decades.
Udeagbala said that the association noted the rising cost of governance as stated in the 2023 budget of N20.51 trillion and that the planned expenditures for debt servicing will definitely surpass the budgeted amount for capital expenditures by at least 15 percent.