16 May 2019

Nigeria: Multiplicity of Agencies Frustrating Economic Development - NCDMB

Abuja — The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), has said the country needs a coordinated local content agency to achieve projected economic development goals.

Executive Secretary, NCDMB, Wabote Simbi, who made the assertion equally called for strategic and sector-wide industrial clusters across Nigeria, said multiplicity of agencies remained a critical barrier to the effectiveness and efficiency of inter-related agencies.

Wabote told The Guardian an interview that the development is leading to duplication of functions, conflicts, overlap of responsibilities as well as counter-productivity.

"There has to be a clear line of sight. If you want to extend local content to construction, or to ICT, all you need to do is amend the existing Act, and not to create another local content body that would be responsible for that. I don't think that is the way to do it.

"Saudi has a focus, there's one agency responsible. In Oman, there is one agency responsible; in Korea, there is one agency responsible, so that's the way to go, and not to duplicate just like we have in some ministries and parastatals."

While Nigeria is currently working on industrial clusters in the oil and gas sector, Wabote noted that it was high time the country had sector-wide industrial clusters that would propel massive economic growth across industries.

He also called for a clear cut industrial development plan to fast-track projected economic goals, adding that some of the current industrial parks projects in Nigeria will be ready by next year.

"The plan is by fourth quarter 2020, we are hoping that two of those industrial parks would be ready, and then, we would start on a small scale because I think if you produce a model that is workable, and then you can replicate and also expand.

"We believe that two of those packs would be ready by fourth quarter of 2020. We are looking at the one in Bayelsa, and the one in Cross River states for a start. We have plans for others, but let us start on that scale," Wabote said.

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