By Victor Ahiuma-Young
The Nigerian Employers’ Consultative Association, NECA, has denounced the rising rate of inflation in the country, stating that recent events in 2020 suggest that the policy options provided by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to control inflation They need a critical review.
NECA CEO Dr. Timothy Olawale, in a statement yesterday, among others, said “The upward trend in the inflation rate over the past 10 months is cause for concern. The rise from 13.71% in September 2020 to 14.23% in October 2020 suggests that the policy options provided by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to tame the bloody head of inflation need a critical review.
“It is instructive to note that the persistent increase in food prices, caused by border closures, restrictions in the foreign exchange market and the insecurity predominantly in the northern states has further aggravated the situation. Since the deregulation of gasoline prices, the country has witnessed a gasoline increase of almost 30% in the last 4 months, suggesting a continued increase in the cost of transportation.
“Sadly, Nigerians are now being hit on two fronts: high transportation costs and high inflation.
“To mitigate these challenges, we suggest that the Federal Government should implement more direct fiscal interventions to help national production, it has been done in the agricultural sector. These interventions should be extended to mining, manufacturing and other sectors with high employment generation.
“It is also important to support the Transportation sector, especially Public Transportation (mass transit buses), reducing tariffs / taxes on the cost of importing vehicles, which is currently around 70% for fully built vehicle units. If the import duty exemption / reduction is applied to the public transport sector, this will surely go a long way in reducing the cost of public transport.
“While we applaud the various intervention programs of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) during the COVID-19 pandemic, the main bank should complement its efforts by synergizing its policies with the fiscal authorities to bring the necessary growth and development to the economy. . We urge, as a matter of urgency, for concerted efforts across the board to create an environment that not only attracts foreign direct investment, but also allows today’s investors to remain sustainable as a way out of the challenges of an economy. would change “.