Multinational auto manufacturer, Groupe Renault has announced that it is re-entering Nigeria’s automobile space following a partnership agreement with Coscharis Motors Plc, one of the leading car dealers in the African country.
The auto dealer said that to kick start the strong cooperation, which would involve both local production and distribution, two of the Renault variants, namely Logan and Duster, would be assembled in the existing Coscharis Assembly facility in Lagos while Renault Kwid and Renault Oroch would be imported as Complete Built Unit in due course of the partnership.
The Senior Vice President and Chairman of the Africa, Middle-East, India region of Groupe Renault, Fabrice Cambolive said, “With a population of over 200 million, Nigeria is a strategic African country where Groupe Renault will extend its footprint.
It’s very unfortunate that many Nigerians don’t see the power in our population, we see it as a burden while foreign investors see it as Strategic Marketplace Initiative. MTN Group Limited saw Nigeria as a strategic African country. MTN came and smiled to the bank. Mohan Vaswani CEO of the Tolaram Group came to Nigeria with two containers of Indomie and he distributed it, at that time, the population was 90m. Today, every instant Noodle is Indomie.
Nigeria is a middle-income, mixed economy and emerging market, with expanding manufacturing, financial, service, communications, technology and entertainment sectors. It is ranked as the 27th largest economy in the world in terms of nominal GDP, and the 22ndlargest in terms of purchasing power parity. It is the largest economy in Africa; its re-emergent manufacturing sector became the largest on the continent in 2013, and it produces a large proportion of goods and services for the West African subcontinent. In addition, the debt-to-GDP ratio is 11 percent, which is 8 percent below the 2012 ratio.
Structural Adjustment Programs (SAP) the evil
Currency devaluation leads to increase in output and improves the balance of payments but in the long run the monetary consequence of the devaluation ensures that the increase in output and improvement in the balance of payment is neutralized by the rise in prices.The naira (sign: ₦; code: NGN) is the currency of Nigeria. It is subdivided into 100 kobo.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is the sole issuer of legal tender money throughout the Nigerian Federation. It controls the volume of money supplied in the economy in order to ensure monetary and price stability. The Currency & Branch Operations Department of the CBN is in charge of currency management, through the procurement, distribution/supply, processing, reissue and disposal/disintegration of bank notes and coins.
Then, most African nations are implementing SAP, as an economic `panacea’ inspired by the World Bank and the IMF. The objectives of a Structural Adjustment Program are largely the same for most African nations, because the world bodies presume that African economies are at the same level of development and are experiencing similar problems.
The stated objectives of the Nigerian SAP are to:
• Restructure and diversify the productive base of the economy
• Achieve fiscal stability and positive balance of payments
• Set the basis for a sustained non-inflationary or minimal inflationary growth, and
• Reduce the dominance of unproductive investments in the public sector.
The effect of mandatory foreign exchange markets has been to erode the value of the local currency over time. Most countries undergoing adjustment have seen their currency values plummet in relation to international currencies. After the implementing SAP in Nigeria, there have been a rapid increase in the number of new banks. At the end of 1983, Nigeria had 32 approved commercial banks of which 25 were functioning with a national network of 11,001 branches, there were 10 merchant banks and 22 development banks, including savings banks.5 By 1992, about six years after Nigeria has started implementing SAP, commercial and merchant banks had increased to 120, there were 500 finance houses, over 200 stock-brokers and brokerage houses, about 156 community banks, a people’s bank with over 210 branches, and 85 savings banks.
The Endless devaluation
All the African nations implementing SAP are today experiencing increasing indebtedness and budget deficits because they are not growing; a growing economy realizes budget surpluses and pays its debts. All the African nations implementing SAP are also experiencing mass unemployment in all categories.This trend has been experienced by the currencies of all nations that have been implementing SAP for about a decade.
Before SAP began in 1986, one dollar exchanged for 77 kobo (1 naira = 100 kobo). When SAP began later that year the dollar exchanged for 1.756 naira and the main complaint among corporate executives was that there was insufficient foreign currency (e.g., dollars) to exchange for the volume of naira available. As the dollar exchanged for more naira, companies became cash-strapped; they could not get enough naira to exchange for dollars. The dollar exchanged for 4.016 naira in 1987, 5.35 naira in 1988, 9.93 naira in 1991 and 22 naira in 1993.7 Interestingly, there has been an increasing gap between demand and supply. In 1988, $2,910 million was offered against $3,260 million demanded. In 1991, $262 million was offered on a monthly basis against the $788 million demanded. In July 1993, $290 million was offered against $3,439 million demanded, and in August, $230 million was offered against $3,930 million demanded.
Nigeria has been hindered by years of mismanagement, economic reforms of the past decade have put Nigeria back on track towards achieving its full economic potential. Nigerian GDP at purchasing power parity (PPP) has almost tripled from $170 billion in 2000 to $451 billion in 2012, although estimates of the size of the informal sector (which is not included in official figures) put the actual numbers closer to $630 billion. Correspondingly, the GDP per capita doubled from $1400 per person in 2000 to an estimated $2,800 per person in 2012 (again, with the inclusion of the informal sector, it is estimated that GDP per capita hovers around $3,900 per person). (Population increased from 120 million in 2000 to 160 million in 2010). These figures were to be revised upwards by as much as 80% when metrics were to be recalculated subsequent to the rebasing of its economy in April 2014.
Although oil revenues contribute 2/3 of state revenues, oil only contributes about 9% to the GDP. Nigeria produces only about 2.7% of the world’s oil supply (in comparison, Saudi Arabia produces 12.9%, Russia produces 12.7% and the United States produces 8.6%). Although the petroleum sector is important, as government revenues still heavily rely on this sector, it remains a small part of the country’s overall economy.
Petroleum industry in Nigeria
Nigeria’s proven oil reserves are estimated to be 35 billion barrels (5.6×109 m3); natural gas reserves are well over 100 trillion cubic feet (2,800 km3). Nigeria is a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). The types of crude oil exported by Nigeria are Bonny light oil, Forcados crude oil, Qua Ibo crude oil and Brass River crude oil. Poor corporate relations with indigenous communities, vandalism of oil infrastructure, severe ecological damage, and personal security problems throughout the Niger Delta oil-producing region continue to plague Nigeria’s oil sector.
The pump price of P.M.S. currently stands at around ₦145 at fueling stations across Nigeria. An initial increase in the price of petrol (Premium Motor Spirit) from around ₦65 to ₦140 triggered by the removal of fuel subsidies on January 1, 2012, triggered a total strike and massive protests across the country. Then President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan later reached an agreement with the Nigerian Labour Congress and reduced the pump price to 97 naira. The pump price was further reduced by 10 naira to 87 naira in the run-up to the 2015 general elections. However, after the elections of Muhammadu Buhari, the fuel subsidies was removed again, and the pump price increased again, despite the fall in oil price.
Since the fall in oil prices in 2015 and 2016, the government exchange rate policy has limited devaluation of the naira due to inflation concerns by the President Muhammadu Buhari.
The largely subsistence agricultural sector has not kept up with rapid population growth, and Nigeria, once a large net exporter of food, now imports some of its food products, though mechanization has led to a resurgence in manufacturing and exporting of food products.
For an average Nigerian, it would mean the deliberate downward adjustment of the value of the naira relative to dollar. A rise fall in the value of the domestic currency in terms of other foreign currencies in the case of fixed exchange rate system is referred to as devaluation, according to the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Currency devaluation have become a pronounced and monumental issue in Nigeria from 1986 to present day. The Nigerian official legal tender (Naira) have suffered tremendous loss in value against other major currencies of the world.
Monetary authorities should do what they can to reduce the temporary increase in prices lest it become permanent. Timing at this point becomes very crucial. More so, the Nigerian government should consider devaluation of currency as the last resort to the economic imbalance.
The order mandates all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to source their textile needs locally.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, told Service Chiefs and heads of paramilitary agencies this week that “we have the mandate of Mr. President to ensure that all uniformed services and theatre wears in hospitals and medical facilities be sourced locally from the Nigerian CTG sector.
Mr. Emefiele said our model in achieving this presidential directive is to facilitate long term contracts (five years or more) with our textile and garment factories to produce uniforms for our armed forces and uniform services using local fabrics and textile materials. We are not naive of the fact that the nature of your jobs will warrant special quality and security around the production of your wares. My team will work with your nominees toward ensuring requisite quality and security associated with your uniforms. Your nominees will also join our team to inspect the various textiles and garment factories to ensure their readiness to be engaged on long term contracts to forestall breaches.
It’s very unfortunate; we print passport overseas, production of uniforms for armed forces and services overseas.
The prosperity of a country lies in the improvements made for the comfort of majority of its citizens. Equality based rights protection is the basic requirement of the citizens. Number of structures and institutional factors combine together to define a map for the government and a social relation between government and its people is maintained. Due to this, government is obliged to provide best material (personnel).
To fulfill human resource plan of workplace, it requires the selection of those persons who can meet the needs of that workplace. Recruitment process starts by specifying the requirements (numbers, skills and time frame) of human resource. These requirements are the result of job analysis and activities of human resource development. After this initial process of job specification description, next phase is the recruitment process. Qualified candidates are asked to apply for the jobs. At this stage recruitment authority requires to devise the selection tools. Selection tools help in sorting out the best qualified persons.
As results of the recruitment process application problems, job description and standard personnel requirements were not adequately used, especially at the lowest category of grade levels in Nigeria.
Kudos! to the government of Ogun State, Nigeria for taking a bold steps in the areas of unemployment by innovating and purifying corrupt job application process in his state through digitization.
Chief Press Secretary, Kunle Somorin, stated that the portal would register, on a continuous basis, unemployed youths in the State with a view to providing them jobs suitable for their trade and academic qualifications.
He gave the site address as www.iseya.ng/public/.
“The Government of Ogun State are partnering with the public-private sector oriented to expand their job space for our teeming young men and women and those who have special talents,” the statement quoted the Governor as saying.
“It is a major pillar of our quality governance model. We are going to have an inclusive government that will utilize valuable potentials that abound in the State and that’s why we are involving the private sector.
“All graduates and those with vocational training across the State will give their information and we will endeavor to match them with potential employers, not only within the civil service but also with the private sector, with whom we are partnering”, he stated.
To ensure that the citizens and residents of the states are not short-changed “we will send a local content bill for legislative action, such that investors will first look inward to availability of workers in Ogun State and make our youths their primary catchment area when they situate their Corp Abida here”.
The Governor said his Government plans certain enablers as corollary to his mission to build our future together through “qualitative governance, education, healthcare, infrastructural development, digitization and agriculture “.
“Besides linking our graduates with industrialists and Government agencies, we plan to engage 10,000 farmers to be supported for mechanized farming with attendant value chain benefits to make agribusiness bedrock of his administration’s plan to lift people out of poverty.”
Already, Governor Abiodun said 10,000 youths will be supported to plant cassava, maize and rice – crops in which the state is a leading producer.
“Each farmer will get a parcel of land and be supported with clearing, seedlings, extension and off takers services to ensure profitability of their ventures,” the statement concluded.
Job portal platforms can help in solving some problems of recruitment in Nigerian federal, state civil service and to determine the extent of the utilization of job description and job specification in the recruitment process if embrace by all government of the federation and not manipulated.
As the continent looks towards its entrepreneurs. With a majority of African nations diversifying from traditional sources of income, entrepreneurship is increasingly seen as a key to economic growth.
Looking into the infrat tenuous economic statistical analysis, it shows vividly that entrepreneurial development is one of the strategic growth tools in which the continent can evolve her economic potentiality.
Nigeria is expected to be the 3rd most populous country by 2050 with a population of over 300 million while several other African countries are projected to have more than doubled their population in the same time period.
Africa, in general, is expected to account for more than half of the world’s population growth between 2015 and 2050.
41% of Africans are currently under the age of 15 and 60% of the continent is below the age of 25.
Now, 9 out of 10 working African youth are poor or near poor and over the next 10 years, only one in four of Africa’s youth are expected to find a wage job at best.
The youth population in Africa is expected to double, to over 830 million, by 2050.
In Nigeria alone, over 40 million additional jobs will be needed between now and 2030.
Entrepreneurship development is basically the process of improving the skill set as well as the knowledge of the entrepreneurs. The process of entrepreneurship development is nothing but helping the entrepreneurs develop their skills through training and application of that training.
Now, Tony Elumelu Foundation as an African non-profit organization.
Founded in by Tony O. Elumelu and headquartered in Lagos. Nigeria Tony O. Elumelu belief that, with the right support, entrepreneurs can be empowered to contribute meaningfully to Africa’s prosperity and social development.
It is has also been a great ĵmoment, since the establishment of Tony Elumelu Foundation, in the areas of entrepreneurship, small and medium scale businesses development to the young continent of Africa.
We are pleased to announce the partnership between the Tony Elumelu Foundation and UNDP to empower 100,000 additional entrepreneurs in 7 Sahel African countries over a 10-year period. This is in addition to the 10,000 African entrepreneurs that the Foundation is already committed to; stated in TEF News letter.
Starting this July, applications open for African entrepreneurs residing in the following countries: Nigeria (Northern), Niger, Chad, Cameroun, Mauritania, Mali and Burkina Faso.
With this partnership, the Tony Elumelu Foundation will give hope to the thousands of African entrepreneurs who have not been selected for its TEF Entrepreneurship Programme.
Across Africa, entrepreneurs are starting every size, and every type, of business. Without adequate entrepreneurship education, mentorship and business support, Africa faces a very uncertain future.
So, we are imploring international organizations, wealthy African descants to partner with the likes of TEF or follow their empowerment path in the areas of entrepreneurship development and employment growth strategies in Africa, that have helping thousand of Africans since inception of the programme.
Nigeria is Africa’s most populous nation (190 million) and largest economy. The country has 8,600 km of inland waterways. The longest are the Niger River and its tributary, the Benue River but the most used, especially by larger powered boats and for commerce, are in the Niger Delta and all along the coast from Lagos Lagoon to Cross River.
Brief history of Maritime Sector
The history of transportation in Nigeria dates back to the pre – colonial era. Within this period, transportation facilities such as roads, railways, air transport facilities were really non-existent with emphasis then on the bush path. At present, the modes of transport in Nigeria include road, railways, airways, inland waterways, coastal waters, the deep sea, and the pipeline.
The modem era of maritime transport was ushered in by the advent of the steam engine. Wooden ships and sail gave way to iron ships powered by steam. A long era of growth in maritime transport followed as trade needs were served more efficiently, and transport activities could be better predicted. Trading horizons expanded and the world economy grew. Transit time was no longer at the whim of prevailing winds and both passenger and freight traffic increased dramatically.
The advent of the jet engine played havoc with the market for long-haul ocean passenger transport as people switched from long ocean liner voyages to more convenient plan travel. Passenger vessels changed radically between 1950 and 2000. In 2000. only ferries and cruise ships remain in most of the developed world, although some small passenger ships can still be found in inter-island services in remote areas of Indonesia, the Philippines, and the Caribbean, and on the great rivers, such as the Nile and the Amazon.
In spite of the growing volume of freight moving by air. the bulk of international freight moves by water. Cargo transported by ship falls into two broad categories: bulk and unitized cargo. The former usually travels via tramp vessels and includes both liquid (including crude oil and oil products) and dry bulk, with iron ore. grains, and coal having the highest transport volumes. Unitized cargo (predominantly containers) is transported primarily by ships in the liner trades. Unitization is the process of consolidating cargo into a more manageable form for transport, be it a pallet or a container. There are many types of vessels to service specialized needs but these general categories provide a useful starting point to understand maritime transport and port systems.
Liner shipping companies offer scheduled transport services to third party logistics service suppliers and cargo owners whose markets are increasingly global. Rather than contracting for the use of the whole vessel, as is the case in the tramp sector, cargo owners only purchase the space necessary at a particular time, thereby sharing the vessel with many others. Containers cany most of the world’s component parts, semi-finished, and finished goods. The transfer of goods within the car parts industry from one country to another provides an excellent example of goods using the liner sector of the shipping market.
Container traffic is important because the timely delivery of the container’s contents creates jobs and generates income across a large population base. It is very important for the future economic health of many nations that container trade continues to grow. Manufacturers can buy components in many places, consolidate them in one or a number of locations for assembly and then transport them to a third location to be sold. Sometimes component parts move seven or eight times before reaching the retail market.
The tramp market transports both dry and liquid bulk products. In contrast to the liner carrier, the tramp vessel does not operate on a fixed schedule or itinerary but sails to meet the current demand with.
Last year, the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) introduces marine transport safety guidelines for operators of passenger boats and passengers to avoid accidents along the Nigerian waterways .
Operators were also warned against taking passengers beyond the capacity of the boat ; using old and rickety boat (any boat that had been in use for more than five years); taking alcohol or drug before and during boat ride , and speeding on the waterways .
The guidelines directed that passengers must always put on life jacket before boarding a boat ; that all boats and boat operators must be properly registered with NIWA ; boat operators should always check the weather to ensure that it was safe to sail; and that boat operators must share safety knowledge with passengers before sailing .
Technology base road transportation company Investment has lead the like of Uber to announced that it would be launching UberBOAT in West Africa this week, and markets responded favorably.
As at May this year, also in Lagos, Nigeria, where ride-hail startup Gokada has raised a $5.3 million Series A round to grow its two-wheel transit business and also Gokada has partnered with Lagos Boats to launch GBoat – a ferry transport service in one of Nigeria’s lucrative natural resources, Lagos waterways.
Likewise, Nigerian motorcycle transit startup MAX.ng has raised a $7 million funding round led by Novastar Ventures, with participation from Japanese manufacturer Yamaha. The startup will also expand to 10 cities in West Africa (starting in Ghana and Ivory Coast) and add new vehicle classes — including watercraft and three-wheeled tuk tuk taxis. All this events will ease transportational difficulties faced by Lagosian every day.
The President Muhammadu Buhari administration Friday concurred with the general view that “the Almajiri phenomenon represents a security challenge and a scar on the face of Northern Nigeria.”
The Federal Government, however, added that contrary to the widely reported news, the ultimate proscription of the Almajiri system of education remains a priority but not for an immediate implementation.
“The abrogation of the Almajiri (Qur’anic learning system associated with begging on economic and religious grounds peculiar to some northern states) system of education remains an objective but there is no immediate ban of it,” the Federal Government clarified in a statement by a presidential media aide, Garba Shehu.
The Presidency called for “caution in responses to the pronouncements by President Buhari on free and compulsory basic education for every child of primary and junior secondary school age in Nigeria, during his speech on June 20, at the inauguration of the National Economic Council (NEC).”
The Presidency noted that “while the Buhari administration is committed to free and compulsory education as a long-term objective of bringing to an end, the phenomenon of out-of-school children, any necessary ban on Almajiri would follow due process and consultation with relevant authorities.”
According to the statement, “Indeed, the Federal Government wants a situation where every child of primary school age is in school rather than begging on the streets during school hours.
“At the same time, we don’t want to create panic or a backlash.
“Reports that there are plans for massive arrest of parents are definitely out of place. Things have to be done the right and considerate way.
“Free and compulsory primary school education is a requirement of the Nigerian constitution and any individual or group not in compliance with this is violating the law of the land and liable to be punished.”
Shehu added: “But in addition to relevant consultations, state governors need to put in place structures like schools and educational materials for pupils; otherwise, they also, are complicit in violating the law of the land.”
In his speech at the inauguration of NEC, Buhari stated, without equivocation, that the country’s children have rights and must be given their due rights and protection under the law.
The President said: “On education, I want to stress in particular the need to take very seriously and enforce very rigorously the statutory provisions on free and compulsory basic education. Section 18(3) of the 1999 Constitution as amended places on all of us here an obligation to eradicate illiteracy and provide free and compulsory education.
“Section 2 of the Compulsory, Free Universal Basic Education Act provides that every Government in Nigeria shall provide free, compulsory and universal basic education for every child of primary and junior secondary school age.
‘‘It is indeed a crime for any parent to keep his child out of school for this period. In my view, when a government fails to provide the schools, teachers and teaching materials necessary for basic education, it is actually aiding and abetting that crime.
“This is, therefore, a call to action. I would like to see every Governor rise from this meeting and rally his local Government Chairmen towards ensuring that our schools offer the right opportunities and provide the needed materials and teachers for basic education, at the minimum.
‘‘If we are able to do this, the benefits will surely manifest themselves.”
Shehu said the statement by the remarks by the President Buhari was well within the law of Nigeria.
Deputy Senate President, Ovie 0mo-Agege, Thursday approved the appointments of Otive Igbuzor as his Chief of Staff; and Yomi Odunuga as the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity.
The Deputy Senate President also announced the appointment of Lara Owoeye-Wise as his Senior Special Assistant on Electronic and New Media.
Omo-Agege, in a statement he personally signed, explained that the appointments which take immediate effect are based on merit.
Igbuzor is Founding Executive Director of the African Centre for Leadership, Strategy and Development (Centre LSD). He was once the International Head of campaigns of ActionAid International and Country Director of ActionAid Nigeria. He was also an honourable Commissioner in the Police Service Commission (PSC).
He was a Programme Co-ordinator of Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), an independent research, information and training institution, dedicated to policy oriented scholarship on questions of democratic development and peace building in the West African sub-region. Previously, he was a lecturer at the Delta State University, Lagos Centre. He is a versatile writer, researcher and author of several publications.
Odunuga is the Abuja Bureau Chief and Deputy Editor (Nation’s Capital) of The Nation newspapers.
Odunuga, a poet, lyricist, reporter and columnist, started his journalism career with The Punch newspaper over two decades ago. He was, for several years, the State House Correspondent of the paper where he maintained two columns – Life in Abuja and the popular weekend treat called Inside Aso Rock.
His insightful and critical analysis of the intriguing politics of that period earned him accolades and recognition which later saw him being promoted to the position of Abuja Bureau Chief at The Punch.
In 2006, he was elevated to the position of Group Political Editor of The Punch. He later joined The Nation as an Assistant Editor and Bureau Chief in Abuja.
At The Nation, his rested The Punch newspaper column, Knuckles, transformed into Knucklehead which offers him the opportunity to continue his weekly interrogation and critique of the socio-political developments in the polity.
A graduate of Religion and philosophy from the University of Jos, Plateau State, Owoeye-Wise is a multiple award-winning journalist whose experience has spanned over two decades and has spread between the print and the electronic media.
She has worked at The Punch, The News Magazine, AM News and Tempo tabloids. She crossed over to the electronic media as a pioneer staff for Silverbird TV, a pioneer staff of the resuscitated Minaj Broadcast International and was Deputy Head of Presentation, Senior News Editor, news anchor and chief correspondent at Africa Independent Television, AIT before her appointment as Senior Assistant, Media to the immediate past Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives.
Lara has had a working stint with the Voice of American, Washington DC and KSTP Channel 5, Minnesota.