Nigeria records ‘significant’ improvement in ease-of-business ranking

Nigeria has recorded a major leap in its ranking in the Ease of Doing Business ranking.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo welcomed the ranking on Tuesday and praised all those who contributed in making that possible.

Mr. Osinbajo, who expressed his satisfaction in a statement on Tuesday, said the development showed “significant result”.

The latest ranking saw Nigeria move up 24 places to 145th in its list.

Similarly, Nigeria was also identified as one of the top 10 most improved economies in the world.

A statement by Mr. Osinbajo’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, said the vice-president welcomed Nigeria’s improved performancs as one of the top 10 reforming economies in the world in 2017, after a decade-long decline in Nigeria’s rankings.

“This year, Mr. President set us an ambitious target of moving up 20 places in the ranking – I am delighted that we have exceeded his goal,” the statement said.

“Improving the business environment is at the heart of the Buhari administration’s reform agenda. We are reinforcing our economic turnaround by a vigorous and active implementation of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan so businesses operating in Nigeria can thrive and be competitive globally.

“For the first time, coordinated efforts across various levels of governments have been undertaken to make it easier to do business in Nigeria.

“I commend all stakeholders who worked with us to achieve this significant result, particularly the National Assembly, Lagos and Kano state governments, and the private sector.”

The World Bank report showed that five reforms made it easier to do business in Nigeria’s two major cities, Kano and Lagos.

The reforms include Starting a Business; Dealing with Construction Permits; Registering Property; Getting Credit, and Paying Taxes.

On Tuesday, the vice-president said the Muhammadu Buhari administration would continue to ensure that Nigerians find it easier to do business.

The statement explained further that the World Bank report endorsed the direction that government has been taking to improve the ease of doing business in Nigeria over the last 12 to 18 months, adding that there is still much work to be done before the full impact of the reforms would be felt by Nigerians.

“We are also collaborating with the National Assembly to deliver an Omnibus Bill to jointly furnish a more business-friendly legal framework for Nigerian businesses in the future,” Mr. Osinbajo said.

“Furthermore, the Federal Executive Council has approved the concession of our major international airports, which will be fast-tracked to enable easier movement of persons.

“We are also nearing the implementation stage of our National Trading Platform to ensure our cross-border trading is more efficient, while collaborating with other countries to safeguard our security.

“This policy will also be supported by ongoing reform efforts to simplify trading within Nigeria, whether that be the ease of trade in goods, regulatory approvals or the protection of intellectual property.”