By Adedapo Adesanya
Nigeria is working towards moving up the ranks of the first 70 countries in the World Bank’s Ease of Business ranking by 2023.
This was made known by the Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, during his address at the ‘Night with Maritime Stars’ of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Corporate Dinner and Merit Awards held in Lagos.
He said the previous result showed that Nigeria moved up 15 places from 146 to 131 last year and that the country could only improve more in this.
He said this development was pushed by the assent of President Muhammadu Buhari of the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) in July 2016 which aims of minimize the constraints that come with running businesses in the country.
The organization put together reforms geared toward making it more convenient for business owners to thrive.
Mr Mustapha said that the government, in its bid to improve efficiency and productivity in the industry and country, had created the council to ensure an enabling environment for port efficiency.
He added that with the country working harder with the PEBEC initiative, the 2023 target would be achieved.
Speaking further at the event, he stated that, “Government will continue to support the maritime sector because on it rests opportunities for wealth creation and economic growth.”
He said to achieve the set goal, there was still a long way to go, but there was a need to recognise the progress that had been made so far, appreciating the effort put in place by NIMASA as the agency contributed N16 billion to the nation’s consolidated revenue account last year.
The SGF said that the progress made so far by the agency was due to the commitment and drive of its staff and stakeholders in the industry, hence the need to appreciate them.
In 2019, Nigeria was tagged as one of the most improved economies in the world for running a business, based on quantitative indicators on regulation for starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency.
And with the impact recorded in six key indicators noted by the World Bank, including making the enforcement of contracts easier, this placed Nigeria among the world’s top improvers.
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