WORLD Trade Organisation (WTO) director-general Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has warned that Nigeria will struggle to rebuild her economy in the post-coronavirus era as the nation is struggling to attract investment due to her high trading costs.
Like many developing nations, Nigeria got hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic as global productivity was down and being highly dependent on the export of raw materials for survival, the economy lacked foreign exchange. To recover from the effects of the shutdown, Nigeria needs accelerated economic growth but to achieve this, the country needs to attract substantial foreign direct investment (FDI).
Speaking at a two-day mid-term ministerial performance review retreat organised by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation at the presidential villa in Abuja, Dr Okonjo-Iweala said doing business with Nigeria is expensive. She also highlighted the necessity of improving Nigeria’s security to attract foreign and domestic investments.
According to Dr Okonjo-Iweala Nigeria must not only slash trade costs but also infrastructure, linkage, regulatory, customs and all other costs associated with moving goods from the factory to the final consumer to complement investment facilitation. She explained that the country’s trade cost was equivalent to a 306% tariff, one and half times higher than the cost in high-income countries.