The Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) of the Federal Government projects average growth of the manufacturing sector at 8.5 per cent to 10.6 per cent over the next four years through the growth of SMEs. The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma, shared this with industrialists during the 60th Annual General Meeting of Nigeria Employers Consultative Association, NECA.
During the presentation, Udoma stated, “The ERGP is driven by five principles which support this fundamental focus. The five principles are: removing the constraints to growth, particularly supply constraints in fuel, power and foreign exchange; allowing the market to function to drive optimal behaviour among market participants; leveraging the power of the private sector by harnessing the dynamism of business and entrepreneurial nature of Nigerians, from Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises to the large domestic and multinational corporations.” Udoma called on the leaders of the Organised Private Sector, OPS, to participate in the implementation of the plan to achieve ERGP objectives.
NECA President, Mr. Larry Ettah called on the government to prevail on the monetary authority to overhaul the current fixed exchange rate regime to allow market forces to determine the value of the Naira to support sustainable and competitive enterprises. “Though it seemed lately to have provided some reprieve for the value of the local currency, it is doubtful if this is sustainable in the long term.
Advanced economies allow floating exchange rate systems which enable economies respond best to declines in the value of their exports and provide a natural adjustment mechanism to preserve foreign exchange reserves and change incentives and behaviour of economic players. This should guide us to allow market forces to determine the value of our currency and end the different rates.