• Thursday, June 13, 2024
businessday logo


Why new finance minister should deepen monetary, fiscal policy reforms, says OPS

Nigeria expects $10bn inflows in few weeks- Edun

The organised private sector (OPS) says Wale Edun, the new finance minister and coordinating minister of the economy, must deepen the ongoing monetary and fiscal policy reforms, while not losing sight of the need to create a conducive environment for businesses to thrive if the tottering economy is to be bailed.

Adewale Oyerinde, the director-general of the Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA), a key member of the OPS of the nation’s economy, tasked the minister in a chat with BusinessDay on Thursday morning, on the expectations of the business community from the newly inaugurated federal cabinet of President Bola Tinubu-led administration.

According to Oyerinde, there is an urgent need for critical ministries – finance, trade and investment, labour and employment, to work in tandem and design implementable policies that will engender investment, ease the burden of doing business, address multiple taxes on organised businesses, and create new employment opportunities in the economy.

He believed emphasis should be placed on resolving the current foreign exchange crisis that has seen the naira slump to over N900/$1 and its dire consequences on the already weak economy, businesses and the people.

Read also: CBN hits back at JP Morgan, explains Nigeria’s external reserves status

“The urgent need to deepen support for the naira and stabilise the forex market cannot be over-emphasised”, the NECA DG said, stressing that “the minister of industry, trade and investment and indeed, other ministers must work in close collaboration with the organised businesses to drive the economy back to growth and consistent development”.

Oyerinde argued that the organised businesses have not had it so challenging in view of the recent removal of the fuel subsidy and subsequent reforms.
He said the situation has made it imperative for the government to expedite action on palliatives and support for the organised businesses, noting that the trend in the exodus of some businesses and closures of many others has worsened the unemployment situation in the country.

“This should not be treated lightly in order to avoid more damaging consequences”, he noted.

On NECA’s expectations from the labour ministry and the new minister in charge, Oyerinde said: “The new minister of labour and employment is coming at a time when much has to be done.

“There is the need to immediately finalise the reviewed labour laws for onward passage as executive bills to the National Assembly.

“There’s a need to reform the our industrial relations system, deepen social dialogue, strengthen institutions of labour administration, drive a more robust engagement with social partners and focus on job creation.”

He noted that the success of the new labour and employment minister would largely depend on how he manages the complexities of the relationships between social partners.