By Henry Uche
The Nigerian -American Chambers of Commerce (NACC) says Nigeria would be short-changed in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) if the dilapidated infrastructure remains unfixed. NACC Director General, Olusola Obadimu, made this known at the 60th anniversary of the bilateral chamber in Lagos recently.
According to him, fixing Nigerian Ports, tackling the insecurity challenge in the country and a deliberate policy to engender mass production of goods and services are imperative to explore the gains in AFCFTA. He said: “The ports need to be functional and more need to be created, then the insecurity issue must be tackled decisively as well as a conscious policy to trigger massive manufacturing of goods and services, else we shall miss out in AFCFTA.”
He advised Nigerian government to heed to the advise of the new Director General of World Trade Organiztion (WTO) as she offers professional advise to make Nigeria benefit from AfCFTA and the WTO. He stated: “If we don’t fix our infrastructure we are deceiving ourselves. We must fix poor road networks, tackle insecurity and produce more. By these, we will have engaged our youths in productive ventures.”
Meanwhile, the president of NACC, Otunba Toyin Akomolafe, noted that Micro and Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria would have little or no hitches going forward with the emergence of Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as the new DG of WTO as well as the Biden’s administration positive outlook.
Akomolafe noted that NACC would do everything possible and legal to foster and promote trade and investment between Nigeria and the United States. “The Biden administration poses positive for us. We shall continue to do our bids to promote bilateral businesses between Nigeria in Nigeria and America.
“Part of the events for the 60th anniversary is the call for entries from our members to enter for an innovative competition. Participants would be required to submit their entries with a token fee to have the chance of winning the N1m Innovation Prize at stake. By “Innovation”, we are referring to a brand new idea or improvement on an existing idea submitted as entry (one entry only per member).
He added that the federal government to do everything possible to arrest the social unrest in the country and redeem Nigeria from economic quagmire. “Our country needs urgent rescue from total collapse. The resource controllers and economic managers of the country should jettison mundane ecstasies and work for the betterment of the people, the sufferings in the land is becoming unbecoming,” he maintained.