" />
Published On: Tue, Oct 13th, 2015

NES 2015 spotlights challenges of Nigerian Economy

Less than three days to the commencement of the 2015 Nigerian Economic Summit (NES), the 21st in the series, Abuja the Federal Capital Territory is set to host the biggest economic stakeholders’ forum of the year. 

Organised jointly by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), representing the private sector and the National Planning Commission (NPC), representing the public sector, the summit scheduled to take place from October 13 to 15, at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, is themed “Tough Choices: Achieving Competitiveness, Inclusive Growth and Sustainability”.

This year’s summit is particularly significant for two reasons- first because the country has witnessed for the first time, a change in administration characterized by a party other than the traditional ruling party occupying the central seat of government and second, because of the current dynamics on the economic scene that require urgent attention.

It is, therefore expected to be a departure from sector- specific considerations that the group focused on in the past three editions.

According to the organizers of the summit, the choice of theme is predicated on the fact that “despite the recent 2014 rebasing exercise in which Nigeria emerged as Africa’s foremost economic power with an estimated GDP of US$536 billion (which has surpassed the economy of South Africa; and accounts for almost 50% of the GDP of West Africa), our growth in the last decade has remained non-inclusive.”

The summit which was initiated in 1993 by the Chief Ernest Shonekan-led Interim National Government, has remained the foremost platform for dialogue between the public and private sectors to discuss issues and challenges facing the development of the country, with a view to developing and harmonizing common strategies for addressing them.

It aims at fostering open and continuous dialogues on Nigeria’s economic development.

NES in action

The major objective of the summit is to create enabling environment that is conducive for good governance, responsive private sector investment and sustainable economic growth and development of the Nigerian economy.

In that regard, the summit brings together chief executives/top level operators from the private sector and very senior government officials to discuss how best to develop the Nigerian economy and monitor the implementation of government policies, programmes and projects.

The summit focuses on developing the short to medium term policy direction for the country that is in line with national interest taking cognizance of the evolving global economy.

The recommendations made by the NES usually become part of government policy upon presentation of same to the Federal Executive Council by the Minister for National Planning.

The summit process is therefore one of the significant drivers for the evolution of many of the reform initiatives that the government has largely accepted and have been gradually implementing over the years.

It has provided an entrenched platform for dialogue and collaboration between the public and private sectors and, indeed, among the various stakeholders in the development of the Nigerian economy.

However, the fact that this year’s summit is coming when the country is yet to have an economic team raises questions as to who really represents the government in the dialogue? Again, when the economic team is eventually constituted, is it going to accept seeming unilateral recommendations for implementation?

Expectations this year

The summit is expected to facilitate stakeholders’ discussions/agreements about how best to achieve competitiveness and inclusive growth in a sustainable way, through measurable outcomes as well as to push for permanent structural changes that would allow inclusive growth.

Key outcomes will include specific recommendations on how to: create jobs; dismantle the pillars of corruption; establish and build upon pillars of sustainable growth and development as well as align  home-grown long-term development agenda with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, that will take effect from January 2016.

In order to achieve these outcomes, the 21st  summit is structured to include a Presidential Policy Dialogue and other sessions will focus on leveraging Nigeria’s competitive advantage, business and sustainability, regulators forum, legislatures forum, policy commission breakout sessions (to deal with industry specifics), design workshops as well a conversation with the state governors.

For the Director General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Mr. Muda Yusuf, “the summit may create the much needed opportunity for the new government to have a serious interaction with the private sector.” This, he says, may lead to government unfolding its policy direction which has kept investors waiting for long.

“I wish we already have ministers; it would have made the interaction a lot more robust,” he however added.

Wale Abbey, Secretary General of Financial Market Dealers Association (FMDA), said his expectation is the same as the objective of the summit.

“I want a summit that will bring about consistency in policies towards economic development. I want competitiveness in the Nigerian economy to give room for foreign investment,” he said.

He also expects the summit to ‘create a more conducive atmosphere for businesses to thrive.

Organisers’ optimism

Speaking with journalists last month in Abuja, NPC Secretary, Mr. Bassey Akpanyung, said preparations for the summit had reached advanced stage with high level representation from the public sector, captains of industry, representatives of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and development partners expected.

He said as part of efforts to make the summit focused and result-oriented, a presidential policy dialogue on tracking corruption, insecurity and institutionalising accountability would be led by President Muhammadu Buhari, who will declare the summit open.

Akpanyung said the theme of this year’s summit was apt and timely as well as consistent with the aspirations of the present administration’s change agenda and medium term successor strategic plan, 2016-2020. The plan focuses on fighting corruption, addressing unemployment, insecurity, institutional reforms, economic growth and development.

He said the summit would also provide ample opportunity to debate some of government’s recent policy directions including the contentious directive on the Treasury Single Account (TSA) among others, in order to figure out the benefits and consequences of such policies.

On his part, the Director General of NESG, Mr. Laoye Jaiyeola, said the current administration was determined to hold people accountable and ensure that business activities in both public and private sectors are carried out effectively and transparently in line with global best practice.

This, according to him, had necessitated the institutional reforms in various sectors including the implementation of the TSA, adoption of a zero-based budgeting option with effect from 2016 as well as the restructuring of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and blocking of financial leakages in federal MDAs.

He expressed satisfaction that previous outcomes and recommendations from the summit have been implemented by government.

 

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Most Shared

Recent posts

  • CBN ruins Black Market business, says Gwadabe

    Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN’s) foreign exchange management policies have begun to put severe pressure on Nigeria’s parallel foreign currency market as ‘Black marketers’ begin to see their trading margins disappear. Indeed with more stable supply of forex and growing investor confidence on rising oil prices (currently at $74 per barrel) , the business of […]

  • Manufacturers groan despite improved bank liquidity

    By FELIX OLOYEDE Nigerian manufacturers are still credit-starved despite the improved liquidity of the banking sector. Although credit to the private sector has been rising, manufacturers have claimed that access to funds still pose a serious problem. Broad money in circulation increased 8.14 per cent to N2, 401.91 trillion in February 2018 compared to N2, […]

  • MAN, LCCI disagree over CFTA

    By UCHE CHRIS President Buhari seems to be coming under increasing pressure from both home and abroad over his refusal to sign the Continental Free Trade Area treaty last month at the meeting African Union Heads of states and government in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Also Nigerians particularly the business community are sharply divided over the […]

  • Gov. Wike: More garlands for Mr. Projects

    By OBINNA EZUGWU On Sunday April 15, 2018 at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos, Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike was the cynosure of all eyes as he stood firm and composed to the cheering of the audience at the capacity hall to receive the prestigious Zik Prize for good governance. It was indeed an […]

  • The Sterling Bank spreadsheet… an uppity lenders burden

    By TESLIM SHITTA-BEY Despite not stirring excitement in recent years, Sterling Bank Plc has run a recession gauntlet and come out looking marvelous. The bank in 2017 grew its gross earnings by slightly under twenty per cent to 19.79 per cent between 2016 and 2017.  The banks gross earnings (a measure of its business volume) […]

  • Melaye released after being detained, police deny involvement

    Kogi West senator, Dino Melaye has been released from detention reports reaching Business Hallmark indicate. The Senator was released after being detained by officials of the immigration service at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja on his way to Morocco The officials allege that he was detained based on an order from Interpol. However, the […]

  • Breaking: Senator Dino Melaye arrested at Abuja airport

      Senator Dino Melaye on Monday morning arrested after checking in at the international wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport, Abuja. The embattled senator representing Kogi West on the platform of the APC, tweeted that he was picked up on his way to Morocco for an official engagement sponsored by the Nigerian government. Melaye was […]

  • Big Brother Naija 2018: Miracle claims N25m cash prize, brand new SUV

    Miracle Ikechukwu Igbokwe has emerged the winner of Big Brother Nigeria #BBNaija, reality show. Miracle beats one of the most controversial housemates, Cee-C to win the ultimate grand prize of N25million cash, a brand new SUV among other prizes. Miracle is a young pilot and also a model. A total of 170 million votes were […]

  • Economy: Nigeria receives massive vote of confidence – Adeosun

    …We will continue to build reserves and save for the rainy day – Emefiele From OKEY ONYENWEAKU, Washington D.C, USA Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun Saturday in Washington D.C, USA said Nigeria has been praised for her good economic outlook.  Speaking to Journalists during a combined briefing with the Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. […]

  • Nigeria-US Investment Summit not included in our schedule, says Adeosun, Emefiele

    The Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun and the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, have explained the reasons why they were absent at the Nigeria-Us Investors Summit which was held in Washington, DC on Saturday. The summit is organised by the Embassy of Nigeria in the United State and the absence of […]

  • Nigerian banks must grow risk-weighted assets to remain competitive, says Coronation Merchant Bank report

    FELIX OLOYEDE Ability to create risk asset creation in the real sector would set apart leaders of the Nigerian banking industry over the next three years, a new report from Coronation Research, a part of Coronation Merchant Bank Group has stated. The report released last week claimed that while the quality of asset in the […]

  • Nigerian equities market sheds 0.28%

    The equities market closed negative last week as Nigerian Stock Exchange All-Share Index (NSE ASI) dropped by 0.28 per cent to 40,814.89 basis points. Similarly, all other indices finished lower with the exception of NSE Consumer Goods, NSE Premium, NSE-Main Board, NSE 30, NSE Banking, NSE Oil/Gas, and NSE Pension indices, which appreciated by 1.08 […]

  • SEC expresses worry over spate of delisting companies

    FELIX OLOYEDE The spate of highly capitalised companies delisting from the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) calls for some concern, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has stated. The Acting Director General, Ms. Mary Uduk, while briefing pressmen on the outcome of the first Capital Market Committee (CMC) in 2018 on Friday, noted that this trend […]

  • Borno Mosque Attack: Four killed, eight injured Sunday morning

    Four people have been killed and eight others injured in a suicide attack on a mosque in Bama Local Government Council, Borno state. The State Emergency Managment Agency (SEMA) chairman, Yabawa Kolo, confirmed the death toll on Channels Television. The incident occurred when two suicide bombers, a male and female between the ages of  13 and 14 invaded […]

  • Buhari returns to Abuja from London

    President Muhammadu Buhari has returned to Abuja after his visit to the United Kingdom, where he held bilateral talks on Nigeria – British relations and also participated in the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting ( CHOGM). The President on April 9 left Abuja for London after he announced his intention to seek re-election in the […]

  • World Bank jacks up share capital by $13 billion

    World Bank shareholders have approved an increase in the bank’s lending capacity  after the United States backed a reform package that curbs loans and charges more for higher income countries like China. World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said neither China nor any middle income countries was happy about the prospect of paying more for […]