The Nasarawa State Government has reaffirmed its commitment towards business reforms to ensure improved business environment across the state.
Mr Ibrahim Abdullahi, the Managing Director, Nassarawa Investment and Development Agency (NASIDA), said this in Lafia on Saturday at the high level engagement with chief executives of ministries, departments and agencies on State Action for Business Enable Reform (SABER).
Abdullahi said that the engagement with chief executives of MDAs and members of the state House of Assembly Committee on Capital Market was aimed at solidifying collaboration towards removing unnecessary bureaucracy to deliver transparent and effective government services.
He said that the state government had initiated series of reforms in line with the mandate of the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) and SABER to ensure improved business environment.
Some of the reforms, he said, included the establishment of a one-stop shop investment promotion agency, as well as a digitised land administration.
Others are establishment of small claims courts, signing of executive order called the Nasarawa Governance Result and Efficiency Mechanism, which compels MDAs to provide timeline within which they will respond to query, enquiry or provide feedback.
He explained that the programme was organised by NASIDA with support of the PEBEC to engage chief executives of business related MDAs and members of the State House of Assembly Committee on Capital Market on the need to work towards the realisation of SABER programme.
This, he said, would enable the state to achieve the mandate of SABER programme which seeks to provide additional incentives, using results-based financing targeted at improving the business environment.
“A healthy business environment is essential for economic growth, wealth and employment generation, as well as poverty reduction, so
business reforms are required.
”Inappropriate regulation, excessive and uncoordinated taxation, lack of fair competition, unstable policy environment impede investment and the development of markets.
“It also stifle entrepreneurship and compel businesses to operate in the informal economy,” he said.
He noted that NASIDA’s mandate was to ensure that new and old businesses thrive seamlessly.
“And to achieve this, we have taken a number of measures such as digitisation of business related MDAs to ensure that services are obtained in the most friendly and seamless manner,” he said.
Mr Ayokunnu Ojeniyi, the Project Manager, PEBEC Secretariat, explained that the SABER programme was a three years performance based joint intervention by the World Bank technical team and the PEBEC secretariat.
According to Ojeniyi, the intervention is to incentivise and strengthen the implementation of business enabling reforms across the states.
He explained that the ease of doing business mandate was articulated in the economic recovery and growth plan and subsequently retained in the national development plan aimed at generating 21 million jobs and lifting 35 million people out of poverty by 2025.
“I will like to congratulate Nassarawa state, it’s pleasing seen the level of coordination that is obtainable within the state, there’s work to be done so I encourage them to collaborate more.
“This is why this engagement is very important for all the stakeholders relevant to the implementation reforms, and I’m very sure that Nassarawa is one of the leading states as far as this programme is concerned,” he said.
Mr Mohammed Isah, the Chairman, Nasarawa State House of Assembly Commitee on Capital Market, Commerce and Investment, and Dr Abdulkarim Kana, state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, both pledged to work towards the realisation of SABER programme in the state.