‘Insecurity, unemployment, others to decide APC’s fate in 2019’

Unemployed youth

Members of the organised private sector have explained that insecurity and unemployment might decide the fate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2019 polls. Other issues include the poor state of electricity and the decline in citizen’s social welfare.

According to the Director-General of Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Muda Yusuf, rising domestic debts were putting pressure on government’s spending.

He said the private sector has been constrained in the financial markets, as the resources that should have come from it have been hampered.

Yusuf urged government to review the automotive policy, especially in the area of import duties’ revision, adding that the expectations that the cost of vehicles would reduce have not been met.

He said: “Government should explore ways to reduce the interest rates to make doing business easy in the country. The welfare effect of the auto policies and the cost of food prices should also be addressed.

“If there is the need to import to augment domestic supply in a way that it would not hurt the agriculture sector, it should be done. We need to review our trade policy to make it more investment-friendly and reduce the poverty situation in the country.”

Also, the Director-General of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Segun Kadiri said: “A lot has been done by the government as there have been major policy initiations. But, it needs to sustain the implementation of the various initiatives that have been embarked upon.

“Power remains a major issue in the manufacturing sector. Issues that could limit the efforts of the present administration, such as access to reasonable interest rates should be addressed.”

They also cited the Federal Government’s failure to meet its target of creating one million jobs at the end of the 2016.

The Managing Director of BKG Exhibitions Limited, Ifeanyichukwu Agwu urged government to further explore the opportunities in the non-oil sector and create bespoke interventions for various products that have development and export potentials.

But, the Statistician General at the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Yemi Kale explained that there have been improvements in the oil sector and manufacturing in 2017 than the previous year.

Latest BMI research shows that by controlling inflation through currency manipulation and keeping fuel prices relatively stable, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) would be able to cut rates in the second half to support increase in consumption.

The report said although the first quarter growth results are yet to be released, there are expectations that they would improved dramatically, even though the outlook remains threatened by structural issues in the economy.

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