NCCN, others want more competitiveness from states, says productivity cannot be achieved without competitiveness
The National Competitiveness Council of Nigeria, NCCN, has challenged States on competitiveness and to raise their collective prosperity to drive job-rich inclusive growth as a viable path to economic development and poverty reduction.
This was disclosed at NCCN, press panel discussion, with the theme “Competitiveness: The Viable Path to Job Rich Inclusive Growth”.
Speaking at the event, the CEO, NCCN, Chika Mordi, said that States were vital to Nigeria’s quest to attaining a productive and viable economy. “This is why the NCCN aims to create an environment in which businesses have all the inputs required for operations, thereby increasing jobs and improving the lives of every Nigerian”.
Harping on the need for States in Nigeria to look inward, and develop their economies, the CEO Proshare Nigeria, Olufemi Awoyemi, noted that prior to the discovery of crude oil, the Nigerian regions were doing better, competing on the basis of resource utilization.
Awoyemi however, decried the fact that Nigeria has lost a great opportunity since the dip in oil prices, but needs a clear economic ideology to anchor development at the Sub-National level.
He made a strong case for more investments in human capital development, which he said, is critical for the productivity of the nation.
For the CEO BudgIT, Mr Seun Onigbinde, “competitiveness has not been given top priority at the State level”.
Onigbinde opined that the electoral cycle in the country had its effect on the policy framework of states which has been more of short-term in the level of planning.
According to him, “States are very critical to enabling businesses thrive and they control all the factors thathelps us to do business which is why there has to be strong incentives for State governments to pursue competitiveness structure”.
He also listed poor fiscal management, crowding out of capital expenditure in budgets as issues State governments must address.
Earlier in her opening remark, the Program Manager Ford Foundation, West Africa Eva Kouka said the Foundation was partnering with the NCCN to tackle issues like inequality, tackling corruption and ending poverty.
She stressed that Ford Foundation supports ideas and institutions, that are focused on driving social-economic empowerment in West African region.
Kouka commended NCCN on the planned launch of the Sub-National Competitiveness Index, which she believed will be of immense value to stakeholders in the Nigerian economic space.
The NCCN however announced it will on Thursday November 2nd, 2017 launch the Sub-National Competitiveness Index which captures all 36 States from Abia to Zamfara.
The forum brought together stakeholders in policy advocacy space and also financial, business and economic correspondents.
Photo: Chika Mordi