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FG plans fresh automobile industry bill

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Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo

As stakeholders wait for President Muhammadu Buhari to sign the automotive industry bill, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo, yesterday, announced plans for a fresh start.

He disclosed this yesterday at the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) 2019 Presidential Policy Dialogue in Lagos.

According to the minister, the bill prepared by the former administration was not received at the National Assembly; hence the plan to engage all stakeholders in the industry to get it right this time around.

The Comptroller-General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (rtd.), had urged the Federal Government to revisit the auto policy, especially the duty charged on used vehicles.

In his words, “We have decided to engage all stakeholders in the industry. It is like starting afresh and getting it right. The last one that was done was not done well. We have to get it right this time. We are going to engage all the stakeholders, and in the next couple of weeks, I will be visiting all the assembly plants.

“I want to see every single assembly plant that exists and thereafter call a meeting to have them sit down together to discuss the way forward for the auto industry.”

The present administration, he said, is desirous to see that Made-in-Nigeria cars are being purchased at reasonable prices.

“This is the reason we need to have a roundtable to seek your advice on how we can make cars affordable for Nigerians. You are the people that would implement the policies we come up with; so we need to benefit from your expertise.

“We are focused on addressing the challenges which exist in our business environment. Many government regulatory agencies are on a continuous process of formulating different initiatives that address huge areas of concern, which includes the need for modern infrastructure, power supply and good road network across the country, the need to improve local patronage, ease of doing business, access to small and medium enterprises, and address multiple taxation.

“We will continue to engage the LCCI and the organised private sector to come up with policies to encourage investment and improve the ease of doing business in the country,” he said.

Earlier, the president of LCCI, Babatunde Ruwase, had said “these are surely not the best of times for the Nigerian economy,” pointing out that the short term outlook of the key economic indicators was not bright.


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