22 January 2013

Nigeria: New Consumer Protection Bill Underway

A competition and consumer protection law that will enable businesses to operate more effectively in the Nigerian market place is underway.

Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, made this known in Abuja during the maiden edition of the Nigeria Consumers' Award (NiCA) which saw NICON Insurance and 13 other providers of products and services emerging winners.

Others on the NiCA awards list are GT Bank in the banking services, Nokia in the mobile phone accessories, Indomie in the food products, Coca Cola and Star in beverage group, Close Up in the personal care products, ABC Transport in transport services, Arik Airline in airline services, LG in the kitchen and electronics appliances, MTN in the communication service provider and NNPC filling station.

NiCA was organised by the Consumer Protection Council (CPC) to re-energise the Nigerian market-place for a healthy competition, which is capable of increasing consumer satisfaction from interactions between the consumer and provider of product and services.

Aganga, who was represented at the event by the Minister of State for Trade and investment, Chief Samuel Ortom, said government was poised to ensure that appropriate safeguards were being put in place to protect investors and consumers alike.

"Citizens' empowerment and well-being are key performance indicators of the Transformation Agenda of the present administration," he said, adding that this informed the resolve to take to the National Assembly, in no distant future, a Competition and Consumer Protection Bill.

According to the minister, when passed into law, the bill would bring about a competition regime that would enable businesses to operate more effectively in the Nigerian market place.

"It will also enable the nation to harness the gains of privatisation and deregulation, modernise the legal provisions for consumer protection in Nigeria and at the same time build the required synergy between competition and consumer protection in the country."

Aganga , who disclosed that that appropriate safeguards were being put in place to protect investors and consumers, urged all players in the nation's economy to contribute their quota to the growth of the national economy.

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