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Expert Calls For Govt Backing For Non-oil Export Sector

Posted: Mar 1, 2016 at 3:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Seyi Taiwo-Oguntuase, Lagos

Sotonye Anga, an agribusiness strategist, has called for a strong backing of the Federal Government for the non oil sector in order to achieve job growth, foreign exchange earnings and then strengthen the economy.

He made the call while speaking in an exclusive interview with Independent, stressing that without the government of Nigeria standing strongly for export, export will go nowhere.

According to him, “When you talk about exporting, you are talking about going global. It is about doing business in overseas market. So, nobody will be able to do it alone. We need a very strong government backing. It means that the Nigerian government must stand up for non oil sector backing in order to achieve this job growth we are talking about and foreign exchange earnings and then of course strengthen our economy,” he added.

Speaking further, he said there is the need for government to give incentives to exporters, that as it is now, there is no incentive for exporter and that is unfair.

He said before now, there is Export Expansion Grant (EEG) which is the only incentives Nigerian exporters get, but today the grant has been suspended.

“So today if you are an exporter you are simply on your own, there is no incentive and that is not good. We need to create more incentives to people.

“If you want to increase your non oil sector, you have to incentify that sector; you have to create incentive; that is critical to push people to take to agriculture export, without that we are joking.

Speaking further, he stated that in line with President Buhari’s agenda to boost agriculture, it will be wise if his administration takes up granting of incentives for export, adding that, this is what will make more people to go into food production when there are incentives.

He added that there is need to create pre -export incentives and post export incentives, that when put together, it will strengthen the nation’s export.

“When you are an exporter, you are the country’s pride. Exporters are Nigeria’ pride because the goods that are made in Nigeria, the goods produced in Nigeria that are been exported will boost the image of our country. It is about made in Nigeria; people will say so that is what these people are doing for us, we need to encourage them,” he said.

Speaking on some of the challenges facing exporters in the country, Sotonye said when you do business in Nigeria you have to struggle with high cost resulting from transportation and cost of electricity which are expensive.

According to him, “If you move goods from Kogi state to Lagos and then you are moving goods from Lagos to say India or Vietnam, you spend less moving the same goods from Lagos to India than you will spend when moving the same goods from Kogi to Lagos, it means that the cost of transportation is just too expensive.

“Cost of electricity is so expensive, almost every processor will have to depend on diesel power generator and it is expensive to buy diesel, so it is going to push up the cost. So, without giving incentives for export you are more of less discouraging people in that field,” he added.