February 7, 2023

NIPC moves to slash Nigeria’s appetite for borrowing

Initiates Masterplan to boost FDIs

By Emeka Anaeto, Business Editor

As Nigeria’s debt profile continues to be on the rise, the Nigerian Investment Promotion Council (NIPC) has initiated steps to curtail future borrowings by boosting the country’s foreign exchange earnings.

Speaking to journalists in Lagos yesterday, NIPC’s Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer, Hajiya Saratu Umar, said this is part of the initiatives contained in its development Masterplan that is expected to open up more investment space for new investors, both foreign and local, as well as retain those already in the system.

According to her, this is critical to promoting economic growth, creating jobs and generating wealth for Nigerians as well as facilitating development. This assignment is made very compelling if we are to set the nation on the path of sustainable progression towards becoming a prosperous nation.

She pointed out that there was need to promote the country’s investment potential by putting up a marketing/branding strategy, stressing that there would be vigorous campaign as the country cannot continue to go for loans.

She stated further: “Nigeria is a resource rich country with a potential that is unrivalled by any other country in the world. Investment promotion comes into attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and mobilise/remobilise Local Direct Investment to unleash the potential of the economy to the optimum.

“This is especially important with the onset of Africa Continental Free Trade Area, which is now in force where an investor can establish operation in any signatory country and access the Nigerian market.

“If we are to assert our position as a dominant regional player, we must enhance our investment drive.”

“The central and strategic role of the NIPC in the coordination of investment promotion should be activated to ensure Nigeria’s investment promotion drive is given traction to onboard investments into the different sectors of the economy in a bid to facilitate economic growth and national development including job creation, import substitution, foreign exchange generation and reduction of our reliance on debt amongst others.

“Consequently, it has become critically important for all stakeholders in the investment promotion ecosystem to work in synergy and complement our competences to collectively drive a national investment promotion campaign.

“Thus, the National Investment Coordination Framework being evolved by the NIPC will provide a clear strategy for a seamless collaboration and coordination of the investment ecosystem as well as usher in a robust and effective stakeholder communication and engagement.

“We believe this will result in effective partnership with all critical stakeholders including the media community to galvanise Nigeria’s investment performance and ensure investment plays a central role in national development”.

Speaking further on the Masterplan, she said the focus on investment would be largely pronounced in non-oil export by exploring the various industries in the agric value chain as well as tapping into the country’s solid minerals potential.