The National Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) has called on the federal government to sign the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AFCTA), saying it will help reposition the country’s competitiveness in the area of locally manufactured goods.
The immediate past President of the Association, Chief Iyalode Alaba Lawson, who disclosed this while speaking to Commerce and Industry Correspondents during the commissioning of Ide John C. Business Centre at NACCIMA headquarters in Lagos, noted that signing the agreement would make the local manufacturers to enhance their capacity utilisation.
She pointed out that it will further put the government on its toes, adding that such trade treaty will lead the country to fixing and improving on the much needed infrastructure required for global competitiveness.
Lawson maintained that when proper trade policies are put in place and judiciously enforced, the country has nothing to be afraid of, stressing that it would only bring out the best from Nigeria.
The outgoing NACCIMA boss, who regretted that unemployment rate is still high, recalled that she launched an empowerment programme ‘Catch them young and teach them how to become an entrepreneur using their talents.’
Pressed further, she said, she partnered with some government agencies like the Federal Institute of Industrial Research, Oshodi (FIIRO), Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC), for capacity building, training, and workshops to harness the talents of the prospective startups.
Specifically, Chief Lawson disclosed that she opened the Youth Entrepreneur Centre in 17 states which has trained and empowered over 50 thousand youth entrepreneurs.
“NACCIMA Export Promotion Group is doing extremely well to improve our Gross Domestic Product (GDP), you need to have very good strong export group that will obey the rules and regulations of each country, so that we can compete favourably all over the world,” she said.