• Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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FG urged to offer palliatives to vulnerables to offset economic shocks

NDFF 2024 conference to boost Nigeria’s blue, green economies

In a bid to address the impact of economic shocks on the vulnerable citizens, the Nigeria Development and Finance Forum (NDFF) has urged the Federal Government (FG) to provide some palliatives for them.

This recommendation emerged during a two-day conference themed “The Road to Economic and Social Welfare Transformation,” held in Abuja.

A communique signed by Jide Akintunde, director of the Nigeria Development and Finance Forum, stated, “the demand for palliatives remains high due to ongoing global economic shocks and local economic, social, and climate crises. It is imperative for the Nigeria Government to establish frameworks to deliver palliatives efficiently and cost-effectively.”

Additionally, the conference underscored the need for policies aimed at building resilience to crises by enhancing the business environment, incentivizing production, boosting industrial capacity, and bringing production closer to the people. These measures are expected to accelerate economic growth, generate employment, and foster shared prosperity.

Furthermore, the importance of market reforms and the reconstruction of Nigerian institutions to be values-driven, goal-oriented, and efficient were highlighted. Good governance and public sector managerial leadership skills were identified as crucial for effective resource management, policy implementation, building trust, and promoting unity.

The conference also emphasized the critical role of investment in health and education in achieving sustainable socio-economic development. However, Nigeria’s investment in these sectors has been lackluster, resulting in poor development outcomes and insecurity. The need for a people-centric approach to governance in the health sector and the reindustrialization of the sector to create jobs and drive inclusive progress were emphasized.

Moreover, the ruling elites were urged to prioritize economic progress by enabling critical institutions and progressively deepening success. The role of government in economic development extends beyond providing an enabling environment for business; it includes financing Nigerian businesses to grow and supporting small businesses adequately.

The conference also highlighted the importance of promoting gender equality and eliminating discrimination against women in the economic sphere. Policies to promote gender equality, increase access to opportunities for women, tackle gender stereotypes and biases, and foster inclusive workplace cultures were deemed essential for economic and social transformation in Nigeria.

Furthermore, opportunities for economic growth in the blue economy, including fisheries, tourism, transportation, and regional hub prospects in West Africa, were identified. However, bureaucratic delays, lack of regulatory transparency, and inter-agency rivalry were cited as obstacles to investment in this sector.

Addressing climate change impacts in Nigeria was also deemed crucial. Practical actions and market frameworks, including public investment, education, and health services for vulnerable communities, were highlighted as essential for addressing climate vulnerabilities and driving green economic growth.

The conference featured six sessions, including, fiscal policy for jobs and shared prosperity, monetary stability and revitalising industries and markets, health and social welfare transformation, Nigerian economic sustainability, industry-focused session on the Nigerian blue economy, and industry-focused session on the Nigerian green economy.