The Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission is strategizing with state governments to unlock investments inflows into the Nigerian economy.
This is just as the Commission is making plans to ensure that Nigeria becomes a preferred investment destination of choice.
The Executive Secretary, NIPC, Saratu Umar, said these at the stakeholder’s engagements held in Abuja.
The event was attended by representatives from all the investment promotion agencies from the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
It was aimed at ensuring better coordination and monitoring mechanism towards boosting the current level of investments in Nigeria.
Umar lamented that over the years, the investment promotion drive of the country is largely fragmented thereby depriving the Commission of cohesive leverage it could have achieved if the three tiers of government synergise their efforts and resources.
She said the absence of a coordination and monitoring mechanism had left the investing community largely for the most part in a state of confusion, adding that the coordination of investment promotion activities between the National IPA, NIPC, and sub-national IPAs for the effective implementation of investment promotion activities was largely absent.
According to her, Nigeria is a resource rich country with a potential that is unrivalled by any other country in the world, adding that this potential was yet to be fully harnessed.
She said further that the level of resource mobilisation is insufficient to harness this potential for inclusive growth and national development.
The NIPC Boss said, “The investment promotion drive of the country is largely fragmented manner thereby depriving us of cohesive leverage we could have achieved if we synergized our efforts and resources.
“Secondly, this absence of a coordination and monitoring mechanism has for the most part left the investing community largely in a state of confusion.
“Additionally, the coordination of investment promotion activities between the National IPA, NIPC, and sub-national IPAs for the effective implementation of investment promotion activities is largely absent.
“As NIPC strategizes to increase national attractiveness and branding to position Nigeria as a constant preferred investment destination of choice, strategies at the national and subnational levels to deepen investment promotion drive of Nigeria and the day-to-day problem-solving for established and incoming investors must developed, harmonised and implemented.
“Country level effort should be created for investment promotion under the coordination of the national IPA, NIPC and protocols put in place, to avoid a ‘race to the bottom’ conduct, which will eventually be detrimental.
“The central and strategic role of the NIPC in the coordination of all investment promotion should therefore be activated to ensure Nigeria’s investment promotion drive is given traction to onboard investments into the different sectors of the economy in a bid to facilitate economic growth and national development as well as job creation, import substitution, foreign exchange generation and reduction of our reliance on debt amongst others.”
In order not to lose out of the tremendous opportunity in the investment ecosystem, she called on states to collaborate under NIPC’s coordination to implement investment facilitation measures to maximise the impact of investment facilitation activities.
“A well-coordinated ecosystem that ensures complimentary national and subnational IPA roles are key to avoiding downstream problems for investors.
“Under the NIPC coordination of the ecosystem as enshrined in its establishment Act, Government investment promotion players can undertake mutually reinforcing and complementary roles to attract, retain and grow investment in Nigeria.
“This I reiterate is to ensure Nigeria takes maximum advantage of the tremendous opportunities it has, which has now even been enhanced by ACFTA,” she added.
In addition, Umar said national and sub-national coordination will facilitate transparent exchange of information among government agencies on investment that can support optimising the value proposition of the country to prospective investors.
This, she added, is also relevant for reinvestments in the economy by existing investors.
She urged all stakeholders in the investment promotion ecosystem to work in synergy and complement the NIPC’s mandates and competences to facilitate a national investment promotion campaign under the National Investment Promotion Masterplan which will also holistically accommodate investment opportunities at the state levels.
She stated that under the National Investment Coordination Framework being evolved, NIPC will provide a clear strategy for a seamless collaboration and coordination of the investment ecosystem as well as usher in a robust and effective stakeholder communication and engagement.
This, she noted, will result in effective partnership with all concrete stakeholders including sub-national investment promotion players.
“A National Council of Investment Promotion will also be launched by the NIPC under its chairmanship and membership of all sub-nationals with investment promotion roles to facilitate, a peer review, seamless coordination of the activities of the national and state IPAs for holistic growth and development.
“NIPC will also enhance its capacity building for investment functions at the sub-national levels, also create a standardized template for the collection of investment-grade project data, information on business-enabling reforms, at the subnational level; that will feed into a dashboard to be developed and domiciled at the NIPC,” she added.