Nigeria has started to witness the effect of efforts by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo to improve the economy and enhance the ease of doing business in Nigeria.
The effect was seen today as the Naira, for the first time in weeks, appreciated against the dollar at the parallel market.
On Thursday, February 23, 2017, Naira sold for 500 per dollar, while trading at 600 to the pound and 510 to the Euro.
Yesterday, February 22, the Naira closed at 505 per dollar, 620 to the pound, and 520 to the Euro.
It was even worse on the 20th when Naira closed at 520 to the dollar, and 635, 545 to the pound, and Euro respectively.
Committed to achieving its objective of creating a conducive business environment in Nigeria, the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) chaired by Osinbajo had approved a 60-day national action plan to push through short term reforms.
The Acting President said the Council will within the stipulated period focus on areas that will not only deliver tangible changes for SMEs but also help improve Nigeria’s entire business environment within the shortest possible time.
According to Prof. Osinbajo, “we are trying to improve the business environment in three broad respects; the entry and exit of goods; entry and exit of persons into Nigeria, and then general government transparency- transparency and efficiency in government agencies, parastatals.
“The whole idea is that we are able to provide an environment for those who want to do business in Nigeria- local businesses and of course, foreign businesses.’’
The Acting President said the participation of National Assembly’s leadership at Tuesday’s meeting was to “work together, trying to improve the business environment in Nigeria.’’
Prof. Osinbajo said the renewed synergy with the legislature was to ensure that all the necessary legislations relating to the reforms were passed by the National Assembly.
The Acting President said:
“There are pieces of legislations that we are also looking forward to seeing. We are working together with the National Assembly to ensure that these pieces of legislations are passed.”
He added that the expected outcome of the new plan will be noticeable in improvements in all the key areas of government that facilitate trade and commerce.
According to Acting President Osinbajo, “there are improvements which we expect to see at our ports.
“Improvements at our airports, improvements at the seaports, improvements in immigration visas, etc.
“So there are quite a few things that we have seen and which we will continue to look at.’’
Prof. Osinbajo however noted that “the set timelines in the action plan were to ensure that we are not just speaking about these things without necessarily tying ourselves down to specific timelines.’’
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