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Friday, 15 September 2017

Economic Partnership Agreement: former Tanzanian president Mkapa dissuade Nigeria

Mkapa
Mkapa


A former President of Tanzania, Benjamin Mkapa, has outlined steps that Nigeria can take to sustain its exit from recession and stay permanently on the path of growth.


Mkapa gave the advice in his capacity as the guest speaker at the 45th Annual General Meeting of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria in Lagos on Thursday.

Delivering the keynote lecture titled, ‘Revitalizing Nigeria’s Manufacturing Sector’, the former Tanzanian leader, who has earned a reputation for moving his country out of recession into a growth rate of five per cent per annum, listed technology as a very important factor in staying relevant in the global market.

He said that it was also important to reform business registration procedures to reduce bureaucracy so as to better the country’s investment climate.

Nigeria, according to him, must also banish corruption; maintain constant synergy between the government and the private sector, where the private sector continuously works with the public sector to improve the business environment; have good financial system; a practical and transparent system of taxation; and establish a mechanism to monitor the implementation of policies.

He advised the government to focus on developing what he called “pillars of growth,” which included encouraging youth and women entrepreneurs, continuous improvement of the business environment, adaptation of technology and adoption of effective trade policies.

Mkapa said the federal and state governments, as well as private individuals needed to push policies that would encourage many more Nigerians to go into business like the President, Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote.

According to the former Tanzanian leader, with an estimated Gross Domestic Product of $405bn in 2016, representing 0.65 per cent of the world economy and almost a quarter of Africa’s total GDP, it was important for Nigeria to pause for reflection and assess its own economic history and profile so as to determine its impact on the manufacturing sector’s growth or decline so far.

He added that technology, especially the advent of robotics, was a great threat to the future of manufacturing all over Africa.

He added, “Generally speaking, the future of the manufacturing industry not only in Nigeria, but in Africa as a whole, is not that rosy as it is very uncertain. The onset of emerging technologies such as mobile connectivity, artificial intelligence, next-generation robotics, and 3D printing pose great threat to the industry.

“But I fully acknowledge that Nigeria remains an extremely important economy and has a major role to play in the continent’s crusade for economic liberation, which in my opinion can best and easily be achieved through strategic industrialisation, with emphasis on the manufacturing sectors that will help us to increase our share in the global trade.”


Source: Punch

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