By Oluwafunke Ishola
Lagos – Mr Babatunde Ruwase, the President, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), says the Federal Government has a huge task in fostering an environment where businesses can thrive better.
Ruwase stated this during the Chamber’s Annual General Meeting in Lagos on Thursday.
He said that sound and result-oriented business regulations were critical for private sector development.
According to him, in 2018, businesses experienced frequent incidence of regulatory challenges, leading to increased burden on businesses; higher cost of operation; waste of executive time; and reputational consequences.
“These manifested in form of arbitrary fines and charges, sanctions and frequent summons of corporate executives by the national assembly.
“The regulatory environment was a major source of distraction for many corporations during the outgoing year and it also adversely impacted the confidence of investors,’’ the LCCI boss said.
He acknowledged the efforts of the present administration through the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) and series of Presidential Executive Orders targeted at improving the business environment.
Ruwase noted that the outgoing year was characterised by numerous opportunities, achievements and challenges, saying that “in all, it has been a very eventful year for our chamber’’.
He said that despite all the challenges, the economy was able to maintain a positive growth trajectory driven by the recovery of oil price for most part of the year.
Ruwase said that this gave a major boost to the macroeconomic fundamentals,
“Nigeria remains a robust economy with a large market, abundant natural resources and a productive population,’’ he said.
The LCCI chieftain appealed to all members to improve their participation in the activities of the chamber by regularly attending meetings and events.
“It provides veritable platform for discussing policy matters and issues that affect various sub-sectors of the economy,’’ he said.
Ruwase said that the chamber remained resolute in promoting policies that supported private sector development and the general progress of the economy.