Daily Trust (Abuja)

9 August 2012

Nigerian Businesses Lose 10 Percent of Revenue to Inefficiencies - World Bank Report

Richard Montgomery of DFID, Olusegun Aganga, Nigeria's minister of Trade and Investment, Governor Peter Obi of Anambra state, Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly, World Bank Country Director for Nigeria and Alhaji Nadada Umar, DG SMEDAN at the presentation of the World Bank's Investment Climate Assessment report today in Abuja

Over 10% of revenue streams of firms in Nigeria are lost to inefficiencies in electricity, bribery and production according to a World Bank report on Investment Assessment Climate in 26 states across the country.

"The business environment according to our calculation extracts at least a minimum of 10% from revenues of all companies," said Michael Wong, lead private sector Development specialist, while presenting the report today at Transcorp Hilton Hotel, "and that is twice as high as any other comparative company that we have in the report."

"It is certainly twice as high for south Africa, Brazil, Russia and Indonesia where we feel that Nigeria should be comparing its self," Wong said.

He explained that small scale enterprises are more threatened by the inefficiency than the large firms are able to manage it.

The best investment destination in Africa?

Minister of Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga, admitted the existence of the challenges, but claimed that "investment flow in Nigeria has gone up by 46% to 8.9 billion."

"What that means is that in spite of some of these challenges, Nigeria is the preferred destination of business in Africa. Nigeria is in the top quota globally in terms of countries attracting investment."

He said the Jonathan administration has put in place several measures to ensure that the investment climate is improved including easing the company registration with the Corporate Affair Commission.

Growth without employment

"Investment climate, everybody knows is the most critical issue in turning around our economy," said Peter Obi Deputy Chairman of Nigerian Governors Forum. "Today we have what we call jobless growth."

Peter Obi said the perception of investment climate in the country is worse than the reality. He said it only when investors come that they understand that the climate is not as bad as it seem.

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