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Nigeria: LCCI calls for government backing for key industries

The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has urged the Federal Government to implement special support mechanisms for strategic companies and industries crucial to achieving inclusive economic growth.

In a statement endorsed by its Director-General, Chinyere Almona, the chamber emphasized the necessity of providing support systems for industries, particularly in light of the prevailing economic challenges confronting the Nigerian economy.

The chamber highlighted the pressing need for targeted interventions and government support due to ongoing challenges, including the escalating cost of doing business and various socio-economic factors such as growing insecurity concerns.

The statement stressed the significance of recognizing the pivotal role certain companies play in driving Nigeria’s efforts to stabilize prices, enhance foreign exchange inflows, and attract foreign direct investments.

“These strategic companies, often operating in key sectors such as manufacturing, agriculture, technology, and infrastructure, serve as the backbone of the economy, contributing significantly to its stability and resilience.”

As per the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), the Dangote Refinery is starting to wield a considerable influence on Nigeria’s economy. Its impact is particularly noteworthy in the pursuit of national self-sufficiency in the production of diesel and aviation fuel.

The LCCI also highlighted another transformative intervention, noting the commencement of international flights to the United Kingdom by Nigeria’s Air Peace. This development is seen as a significant milestone in the country’s aviation sector and broader economic landscape.

It added, “We need more support for local companies to play in sectors that have hitherto been monopolised by foreign companies.

“More local airlines covering more international routes means more aviation supply chain-related jobs, more foreign currency savings and earnings, and more reduction in the prices of international flight tickets in Nigeria.

“Enabling optimal utilisation of all our bilateral air services agreements creates a sustainable source of foreign currency savings and earnings for our country.”

The chamber, however, noted that those companies, notwithstanding their strategic importance, were not immune to the adverse impacts of economic downturns, market uncertainties, and global disruptions.

In its recommendation, the LCCI urged the government to provide concessional credit and low-interest loan facilitation, grants, or waivers to eligible companies to facilitate their operational continuity, investment in infrastructure, and technological advancement.

It also called for the creation of a conducive policy environment by improving policies and regulatory frameworks that incentivise innovation, entrepreneurship, and long-term investment.

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