NECA wants government to do more for businesses to thrive

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Zainab Ahmed

THE Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) on Tuesday urged the Federal Government to go beyond inviting foreign investments to providing the necessary support and environment for businesses to thrive in the country.

The Director-General, NECA, Mr Timothy Olawale, made the appeal at a news conference on the suspension of the operations of Greif Nigeria Plc, marketers and manufacturers of steel drums.

Olawale warned that many businesses were closing down due to the unfavourable business environment in the country.

Commending government’s efforts at improving the Ease of Doing Business in Nigeria, he, however urged that efforts be doubled to create conducive operating environment for businesses to thrive.

“The association is concerned by the closure of businesses in the country. This trend impacts negatively on the nation’s revenue and increases the unemployment rate.”

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that it is public knowledge that 59-year-old Greif Nigeria Plc manufactures steel drums used for production of iron and steel has suspended its operations.

The company, which had thousands of workers, now has less than 25 workers, according to a reliable source, which preferred anonymity.

Greif Nigeria Plc suspended its operations in Nigeria temporarily in February 2019 after poor outings for many months, which was attributed to overwhelming economic challenges.

The NECA director-general said that the recent suspension of operations of Greif Nigeria Plc and other manufacturing companies in the country was not good for the economy.

“It is sad to receive the news of the closure of the factory plants of the company in Delta and Kaduna States and ultimately the suspension of its Nigerian operations.

“Business closures have greater consequences for the nation as a whole as more Nigerians will join the labour market.

“Beyond the income of families being truncated, unemployment figures will rise, social malaise will increase and governments ability to generate income through Company and Personal Income Taxes will be reduced,’’ he said.

“There is no reason why interest-free loans, bail-out grants or tax holidays should not be given to businesses that have been certified as being on the brink of collapse,’’ Olawale said. (NAN)

– Feb. 12, 2019 @ 13:42 GMT |

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