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Border closure is killing businesses — Expert

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An international trade expert, Mr. Bamidele Aiyemibo, yesterday, said continued closure of border with neighbouring Benin Republic was a trade impediment within West African region, adding that it has crippled Nigeria’s economy and other neighbouring countries.’

Speaking at the Non-Oil Exporters Regional Dialogue in Kano, an event organised by Policy Development Facility II (PDF), a United Kingdom aid-funded project for Nigerian exporters and business community in North West Region, Aiyemibo said Federal Government’s diplomatic policy also has negative consequences on inter-regional trade of Nigeria.

He said.”Solution to the influx of contraband and importation from Benin to Nigeria is simple. Instead of border closure, why not arrest and prosecute those turning our country to dumping ground? We have laws that prohibit importation of some goods and anybody found contradicting these laws should be arrested and prosecuted. By the time two persons are jailed, others would be deterred. Outright closure is also killing Nigerians whose goods are needed in Benin…”

Another expert, Dr. Olumuyiwa Alaba, said the forum was initiated to educate exporters on needed skills and knowledge in export competitiveness as well as enabling interface with policy regulators in the export industry.


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