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The ease of doing business in Nigeria climbed a bit higher. Today, Nigeria is ranked higher, what many don’t know is that; in the area of access to credit, Nigeria ranked sixth in the whole world amongst over hundred and fifty countries . This Revelation was made known by Jumoke Oduwole, a Senior Special Assistant to the government on Trade and Investment.
In the words of Jumoke Oduwole , ” it is about hard work and collaboration between state and central government”.
One of the factors that has increased the ease of doing of doing business in Nigeria is actualisation and innovation. Take Corporate Affairs Commission ( CAC) for instance, there is a sharp reduction of time frame that business names can be searched , today this is just about 24 hours for a name search and business registration is also done online and one don’t need the services of a lawyer to get business done . What the government did was to leverage on technology and reduce all the bottleneck that is associated with Business registration, such as tax number which is given during the time of business registration.
In the area of collaboration, Jumoke added that ” each state has their own laws and we have encouraged them to improve on transparency , we have worked closely with Lagos and Kano on the issue of documentation of land and map out their reforms . Other states have taken suit. Nigeria would be ranked every year and we must work on it “.
On what Nigeria needs to do to get to the next level. The government is on the second national action plan, which is to drive momentum such as executive order on transparency and efficiency in businesses in Nigeria ,especially in the area of Airport and sea ports.
Access to credit is a huge one, Nigeria is ranked sixth out of over hundred countries by the World Bank. The impact of this is important and SMEs must understand that due to lack of their structure, it brings up the credit risk and impact their credit history. Now, Nigeria has introduced the credit rating and history.
Today, we have a national collateral registry in Nigeria. This would make people seeking access to credit to use other collateral instead of land collateral, she remarked.
In the area of competitiveness, the government recognised that infrastructure is key and power is on top of this list. The government has encouraged states to look at their areas of competitiveness and comparative advantage.
The government is poised to ensure that access to credit is easier ,with a solid legislative framework that would encourage banks to take chances with the SMEs. These are new laws in place today , these laws would ensure an enabling business environment.