The Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment has urged all sectors to take advantage of the forthcoming Global Leaders Investment Summit (GLISA) to attract investment to Nigeria from participating nations.
Mr Edet Akpan, Permanent Secretary, who was represented by Mr Ishaya Abednago, Deputy Director, Investment department of the ministry, made the call on Tuesday in Abuja at a news conference on the forthcoming summit and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Awards.
The global summit is being organised by Arise O Nigeria Empowerment Initiative in collaboration with International Peace Commission (IPC), Intergovernmental Organisations and the ministry.
The GLISA 2019, tagged “Peaceful Co-existence and Synergy for Global Development is scheduled to hold in Canada, from Oct. 16, to Oct. 18, 2019, in commemoration of the United Nations day for poverty eradication.
He said that the present administration was determined to achieve the SDGs in the country by implementing several reforms to make it easy to do business in Nigeria.
““The reforms so far implemented in the sector have caused Nigeria to move 25 steps upwards in the World Bank Ease of Doing Business between 2016 and 2018.
““The reforms are currently being deepened to achieve a vibrant enabling business environment for economic growth and development in Nigeria.
““To ensure the attraction of investment that speaks to our SDGs the government reviewed model used for the negotiation of investment promotion and protection agreement to balance investors’ rights, obligation and increase comfort ,’’ he said.
He said previously, foreign direct investment inflow in Nigeria was obstructed by minimum capital requirements and in the genius capital threshold of up to 40 per cent in some cases.
According to him, government has removed restrictions of foreign ownership of business in Nigeria.
He pointed out that 100 per cent foreign ownership of Nigerian businesses “is possible except in a few sectors”.
Akpan added that government had introduced legislations to prevent businesses from being nationalised by the government and had also put in place regulations that allowed for the establishment of mini grids in power sector.
“There is a renewed draft for Public Private Partnership (PPP) which is a deliberate policy of government for infrastructural development with several incentives.”
The permanent secretary urged all sectors, especially infrastructural sectors to take advantage of the summit holding in Canada to attract investment from participating nations to Nigeria.
Dr Tunji Asaolu, Nigerian Representative of the AU Economic Social and Cultural Council (AU-ECOSOCC), said the aim of the summit was centred at enhancing investment collaboration for development and economic impact.
He said that the summit would not only serve as implementation to AU Plan of Action on poverty eradication and unemployment in Africa but would be an avenue to strengthen economic diversification in Nigeria.
Asaolu, who is also the Chairperson, AU Committee on Social Affairs and Health Cluster, said the summit which was endorsed by IPC, an Intergovernmental Organisation, would be a catalyst to policies implementation and other related matters.
“”The outcome of the summit will be an indirect way of contributing to the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement,’’ he said.
The AU representative urged the Federal Government to be part of its ramifications which would lead to investment in products and services.
He commended the Arise O Nigeria empowerment initiative and other stakeholders for the initiative, adding that it was a legacy which must always be remembered.
Also, Dr Jonathan Ojadah, Founder of Arise O Nigeria empowerment initiative said the summit would facilitate achievement of the sustainable development goals and bolster investment.
He called for empowerment and advocacy of vulnerable youths and women as well as promotion of peace and good governance toward achieving the SDGs in Nigeria.