As the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is now in its 7th month since take off, member countries of the agreement are being tasked with fully utilizing the trade platform for economic benefits.
In light of this, Ide John Udeagbala, National President, Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) has urged players in Nigeria’s Organized Private Sector (OPS) to maximize the trade platform for business expansion goals and economic benefits.
He mentioned this during the NACCIMA national conference themed “The role of the Organized Private Sector in achieving sustainable and inclusive economic growth and development: strategic options on trading under the AfCFTA” held recently.
Udeagbala who was newly inaugurated as the 21st President of NACCIMA said the OPS has a huge role to play under the trade agreement which will translate to economic gains and serve as a business boost for them.
He noted that although AfCFTA players requires an enabling environment to thrive, he advised that participants adopt value addition practices and innovation to provide competitive advantage.
“The Organized Private Sector of Nigeria must create and implement strategies such the increase of productivity and productive capacity, the effective and efficient application of technology to productivity, and a strategic focus on removing the language barrier to trade,” he said.
He added that technology and digitalization is fast becoming the norm and wields huge impact on business activities hence Nigerian participants needs to get familiar with the trend.
“The digital transformation of manufacturing, production and other related industries require development of the capacity of Nigerian businesses in the areas of digitization and technology, this is to reposition the Nigerian economy to achieve sustainable and inclusive economic growth and development through the implementation of the AfCFTA,” Udeagbala said.
Highlighting the focus of his tenure, Udeagbala said NACCIMA will make efforts to ensure the effective and efficient utilization of the AfCFTA, and also strengthen the collaboration between the private sector, all levels of government and the diplomatic community.
“NACCIMA will also try to create an enabling environment for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) with a focus on business and capacity development in the areas of agriculture, technology, industry and services,” he added.