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NECA seeks effective fiscal, trade policies to salvage economy from imminent collapse

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Director-General of NECA, Mr Timothy Olawale


To salvage the Nigerian economy from total collapse, there must be a mix of fiscal, monetary and trade policies with political will approach to tackle the mounting economic challenges, the Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) has said.

In a statement, NECA expressed concern about the state of the Nigerian economy, calling on government to deepen engagement with the private sector as a way of fast-tracking job creation, investment generation and the development of the nation.
  
Director-General of NECA, Dr. Timothy Olawale, who called for urgent steps to salvage the economy, affirmed the commitment and readiness of organised businesses to continue to support government in the arduous task of nation building and economic renaissance.  

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Olawale maintained that it was evidence that the Nigerian economy is facing a grave risk of hedging into deeper challenges if drastic and immediate economic transformation, focused and strategic engagement were not implemented, coupled with the political will to achieve the set targets in the near plausible period.      The NECA boss highlighted some issues of economic importance that needed urgent attention such as diversifying the mono-cultured sources of revenue, curtailing rising debt accumulation, policy rejuvenation, tackling youth unemployment, reduce cost of governance and abuse of oversight responsibilities.
    
He said with the unpredictable nature of global oil prices and developments in the usage of alternative sources of fuel and modern technology, it was more appropriate to hasten the process of diversification of the non-oil economy to expand the revenue sources, noting that it was obvious that revenue from non-oil sector was more feasible and less volatile than the oil revenue.
    
He said this would facilitate a buoyant and robust economy and reduce the need for external debt to the barest minimum.  
 
In the quest to reduce rising debt profile, NECA suggested the Federal Government should sell or concession its assets that are lying fallow or moribund.
    
It said proceeds from it should be channelled into financing annual budget deficits, adding that the crowding effect of borrowing locally has its tolls on the private sector and ability to borrow for productive purposes.
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The statement read in part: “We need to go back to the fundamentals of our economy where such big issues like diversification of the economy, backward and forward integration, policy coherence, policy consistency and cross-sectoral local content policy will be given their pride of place and execution impetus. Every policy action and decision of government should be judged on the basis of its impact on job creation.  
 
“There is need for strict coordination and inter-governmental and Agency collaboration for them to achieve the objectives of creating not only jobs but decent jobs for the teeming Nigerian youths.  
   
“All the aforementioned policy options should be underpinned with the political will to implement. The nation should aim for a political and economic structure where federating units will contribute to the centre, thereby assuming the status of multiple centres of productive economic activities and development. This surely will spin off jobs in millions and create sustainable employment.”

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NECATimothy Olawale
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