The Senate yesterday passed the bill that reenacted the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA), which is said to be the biggest business reform bill in Nigeria in over 28 years.
According to a statement from the Office of the Senate President, the bill heralds a new dawn for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) development in Nigeria.
Speaking on the passage of the Bill at plenary, the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, said the passage of CAMA was a significant milestone in the Senate's legislative agenda.
"With the passage of CAMA, which is by far the biggest and one of the most far-reaching legislation ever passed in any legislature in our country, we have now put in place a regulatory framework to promote the ease of doing business and reduce regulatory hurdles.
"This is a pro-business law. This bill that we have just passed will show the audacity that we have to move Nigerian businesses into a new era of success and development," Saraki said.
The statement explained that the new bill, once it is signed into law, would help to make Nigeria's business environment as competitive as its counterparts around the world.
It added: "It will allow business owners to now register their businesses in a faster and more efficient way, using technology; removes all the unnecessary regulatory provisions, such as the requirement for 'annual general meetings' and 'company secretaries,' and reduces the minimum share capital for all companies and start-ups in Nigeria, which will encourage more investments and create new jobs."
"CAMA will also creates the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) which is a new form of legal identity for businesses in Nigeria that is targeted at increasing foreign investment in the country, as well as guarantees that Nigerians will be able to register their businesses from anywhere in the country through the e-Registration system that the Senate's amendment gives legal backing."
Speaking further on the bill, Saraki said: "We are truly now walking the talk. With the passage of CAMA, we are saying to the rest of the world that Nigeria is ready for business and the government of Nigeria is ready to support small scale industries to promote innovations, and encourage enterprise."
The senate president, however, said the passage of the bill would not have been achieved without the effort of all his colleagues.
"I thank you for this great day in showing that truly the National Assembly is here in support of Nigerians to create an environment that enables them to be able to create business and seek opportunities," he said.