Business stakeholders have identified multiple taxation and multiple police checkpoints in cities across the federation as a major impediment to the ease of doing business (EODB) in Nigeria.
Stakeholders, who took the floor yesterday in Abuja, at the sub-national technical workshop to discuss the ease of business intervention and the State Action on Business Enabling Reform (SABER) project, urged financial institutions such as Bank of Industry (BOI), Bank of Agriculture (BOA) and Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to facilitate the processes of accessing funds for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
Speaking, Abia State Government Special Advisor on Reform Champion, Chinenye Nwaogu urged the Presidential Business Environment Council (PEBEC) to meet with relevant security agencies to remind them of their role in securing the environment and as an enabler and growth of businesses. bottleneck for the ecosystem.
Lamenting that SMEs are still suffering despite efforts by the state government to provide microfinance banks to access finance, Nwaogu insisted that states were currently struggling with low incomes because SMEs did not have not been properly funded to expand the ecosystem and create more jobs for economic growth and development.
His words: “One thing we want PEBEC to do is to stop several checkpoints in cities, we understand the need to monitor our environment and ensure the safety of SMEs, traders and those who come to do business. business with us in our ecosystem. This should not become an obstacle to the growth of our businesses.
“They should meet with relevant security agencies to see their role in securing the environment as enablers and business growth rather than bottlenecks.
“Problems of access to finance are a major obstacle for businesses. As a state government, we have set up banks for SMEs but it is not enough, we need development finance institutions like BOI, BOA, CBN to facilitate the processes access to financing for SMEs so that they can inject into their businesses to expand the ecosystem and create more jobs for economic growth.
“Because if you look at many states today, they are struggling with low federal government revenue because the FAAC allocation is no longer enough, while state responsibilities are increasing. We need more revenue for the state and one of the ways to achieve this is to expand the revenue ecosystem for SMEs. »
For her part, PEBEC Secretary and Special Advisor to the President on Ease of Doing Business, Dr. Jumoke Oduwole, who admitted that multiple checkpoints on the road have been a problem over the past five years, urged state governments to lend their voice to PEBEC reforms. to make the environment conducive to private sector development.
“We have so many states in the room saying their MSMEs are not doing well that they need to talk to the banks, they also talked about the police and the multiple checkpoints on the roads. We have been working in this direction for the past five years, but we also need the state government to lend its voice to the reforms.