20 October 2011

West Africa: Traders Want National Assembly's Intervention On Epa Negotiation

The President of the National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS) has called on the National Assembly to follow the proceedings in the on-going Economic Partnership Agreement between the ECOWAS and the European Union to ensure that the final document adds value to the Nigerian economy.

The NANTS President Ken Ukaoha made the remarks at the National Assembly, Abuja during the parliamentary briefing with the House of Representatives Committee on Commerce on the EPA negotiation.

"As representatives of the people who have the power to ratify any agreements, we want you to investigate through your oversight functions and make sure that we have an EPA that will add value and not destroy our economy.

"There is no way you can ratify what you don't have knowledge of and that is why we said let us bring the issue to your knowledge," he said.

He said that even though the EPA agreement has its benefits like increase market access and entry, increased growth of competitive industries, low cost for imported equipments from EU among others, it also has its negative impacts on the economy.

Some of the negative impacts of the liberalization on the Nigerian economy as indicated by a report include losses of $6 million per annum for the first five year,$10 million per annum in the next 10 years and $20 million per annum in the next in the last 10 years.

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