By Dennis Erezi
Nigeria’s Vice president Yemi Osinbajo has said the federal government’s goal is to ensure Nigeria is ranked among the top 100 countries on World Business Index by 2020.
Osinbajo made the disclosure while speaking at the second Presidential Enabling Business Environment Committee (PEBEC) Awards ceremony at the State House Banquet Hall, Abuja.
“In 2019, PEBEC set a goal to move Nigeria into the top 100 on the 2020 World Bank Doing Business Index (DBI),” Osinbajo said.
Nigeria is ranked 146 in the World Business Index released in 2018.
Osinbajo noted that Nigeria had in the past three years under President Muhammadu Buhari administration implemented more than 140 reforms intended to make doing business easier in Nigeria.
According to him, in pursuit of its goal to push Nigeria to the top 100 countries on 2020 World Business Index, the federal government will sustain the implementation of PEBEC reforms in all ramifications.
“In the past three years, Nigeria has implemented more than 140 reforms to make doing business in Nigeria easier. The World Bank also reported in 2018 that 32 states of Nigeria improved their Ease of Doing Business environment led by Kaduna, Enugu, Abia, Lagos and the Anambra States.”
He explained that the federal government “will be pursuing the continued implementation of reforms across all indicators, including the implementation of legislative reforms, specifically the passage of the new Companies and Allied Matters Act and the Omnibus Bills.”
Osinbajo added that government will ensure “the expansion of the regulatory reform programme which started with NAFDAC and NAICOM; and now to include other regulators; the establishment of a National Trading Platform for ports; and the concession of our major international airports.”
He noted that the reservation of a business name within four-hours, completion of the registration of a company within 24 hours online, application and reception of approval of a visa-on-arrival electronically within 48hrs, file and pay taxes online and access specialised small claims commercial courts in Lagos and Kano States were part of policies implemented by the federal government.
He also disclosed that the PEBEC in 2019 commenced the “fourth 60-day National Action Plan (NAP 4.0) on ease of doing business with the aim of deepening the reforms implemented by the council in the past three years and consequently institutionalising the entire reform process.”
“PEBEC has now commenced the fourth 60-day National Action Plan (NAP 4.0) on Ease of Doing Business. NAP 4.0 is running from the 1st of March to the 29th of April, 2019. It aims to deepen the reforms delivered over the past three years and drive institutionalisation of the whole reform process.”
Osinbajo stated that NAP 4.0 would focus on improved effectiveness of company law in Nigeria enhancing efficiency in the small claims court and enhancing the application and approval system for visas on arrival, among others.