By Bimbola Oyesola and Adewale Sanyaolu
Nigeria’s ranking on return on investment received a big boost recently when it edged to 4th position with 35 per cent.
The Acting Managing Director, Bank of Industry (BoI), Mr. Waheed Olagunju, stated this at the weekend at a media parley organised by the bank in Lagos, with the theme, “Sustaining Nigeria’s Industrial Sector Growth through Impactful Partnership.”
He said the rating was based on BoI’s performance on stand alone as a development finance institution, noting that several countries are in competition for investment resources.
According to Olagunju, the return on investment is much higher in Nigeria than other countries. “Industrialisation is a multi-faceted process and no single agency can capsulate industrialisation of any country, and so all hands must be on desk,” he added.
He noted that return on investment should not be taken for granted, as “we try to de-risk our environment, improve on climate and continue to take measures by increasing our ranking in doing business.
“In terms of investment returns, we are ranked number four with 35 per cent. Nigerians might go to other countries where they have 15 per cent return on investment where the risks are not as high as Nigeria.
“So we have to put all those things into consideration by ensuring that we promote industrialisation and transform the Nigerian economy within the shortest time possible,’’ Olagunju said. He explained that if those things were not done, Nigeria may not be able to harmonise the challenges in the country, particularly that of unemployment.
Olagunju said the country’s population was growing, therefore, hence the need to take quick decisions to remedy the challenges.
“We have lost many arms of development in our country; all hands must be on deck for us to achieve our desired economy and developmental goals,” he maintained. Olagunju, said that community-based industrialisation should be developed for the growth of the nation’s economy, stressing that the country was naturally endowed with several commodities that could boost its competitiveness as a country.
Each state has at least one mineral or crop where it has comparative advantage, which should be explored.
The BoI boss said such could also help reduce the level of unemployment in the country, noting the urgent need to boost financial inclusion to achieve an inclusive growth.
He also noted that in achieving an inclusive growth, the grassroots have to be captured to boost products in the 774 local governments through the Nigerian Enterprise Development Programme (NEDEP).
He said, “Nigeria is the only OPEC country that still exports crude oil, and some non crude oil products. “There is an urgent need for us to go back to the roots instead of running about and looking for jobs. This is why we need the support of state governors to encourage their youths to embrace entrepreneurship, and also fulfil their part by creating an enabling environment for business to thrive in their states.
“The current government has made a promise to utilise the NEDEP and Nigerian Industrial Revolution Plan (NIRP), which are the keys to economic growth, food security and foreign exchange earnings that we need for economic diversification.
“We appeal that there should be at least one industrial cluster in each senatorial district to harness the current economic realities. Industrialists can still manage to share resources like electricity, factory space, knowledge and even taxes.”