The Vice President of Nigeria, Yemi Osinbajo, has made the most positive comment ever with regards to the oil crisis in the country. He says Nigeria has everything it needs to build and sustain a vibrant economy, and that with or without oil, the country will survive.
“This country has practically what it takes to run a solid economy that is not dependent on oil, but on business and commerce,” He says.
Vice President Osinbanjo made this statement on Monday during a meeting with a group of international investors who plan to be part of the new administration with their investments. According to him, the President had already instructed that a conducive environment be created for business investments in the country. He added that work had already started with government looking at the different aspects involved.
Meanwhile, the Vice President, alongside the Minister for Industry, Trade and Investment, Okey Enelamah, had held a meeting earlier with the World Bank Ease of Doing Business Ranking Team, where issues were laid out and specific lines of action identified on how to improve the business climate in the country. Embarrassing as it is, Nigeria is handicapped at this point and is seeking $3.5bn Loan From World Bank, due to the decline of oil value.
At the interactive session with the visiting global investors, such as Renaissance Capital, Russia-China Investment Fund, China Africa Development Fund, Invest Abu Dhabi, Actis, Emerging Capital Partners, ECP, KKR & Co. LP, Old Mutual of South Africa, among others, Mr. Osinbajo explained that working with state governments and the presidency would ensure that issues such as pre-investment approvals, and acquisition of land titles would be reformed to ease investment in the country.
He also said the government would reduce or merge agencies involved in granting approvals, thereby creating space for businesses to thrive. He also spoke on electricity knowing its importance in creating a conducive business environment, he said the federal government would be making further investments in the sector, however, the entire power value chain would be well compensated in order to produce the needed results.
The VP also confirmed Mr. President’s commitment in creating jobs through businesses and direct action of the government to engage the youths. He said the 500,000 teaching positions for unemployed graduates worked into the 2016 budget is a means of engaging the youths in paid voluntary occupations in their communities until they can find jobs. He also highlighted on Federal Government plans to create skills acquisition centers for non-graduate youths in the country, among a few other things allocated in the 2016 budget.
Notwithstanding, it is high time Nigerians start seeing the bigger picture that oil will not be around for a long time. Parents who send their children to school to study engineering with the hope of securing them a job in the oil sector, should have a rethink and re-strategize.