British American Tobacco (BAT) has called for greater cooperation between the organized private sector and government. This call was made by BAT West and Central Africa Director of Foreign Affairs, Odiri Erewa-Meggison, in an address delivered during the recently concluded Nigeria 2020 Employers Summit themed “The Private Sector as Engine for National Development”. The summit, organized by the Nigeria Employer Consultative Association (NECA), took place in Abuja on June 20-21, 2022.
From left to right: British American Tobacco (BAT) West & Central Africa Human Resources Director Sergio Berlanga; the Minister for Labor and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige; the Director of Foreign Affairs, BAT West and Central Africa, Odiri Erewa-Meggison; and the President and Chairperson of Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA), Mr. Taiwo Adeniyi, during the first Nigeria Employers Summit 2022 organized by NECA on June 20, 2022 at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja.
Erewa-Meggison also commended NECA and the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) for effectively representing the private sector while urging for a more collaborative regulatory environment between the organized private sector and government agencies.
“A collaborative regulatory environment means creating the enabling environment for the organized private sector and government agencies to work together for national development. That includes sitting at the table when important decisions are made that impact our industries,” she said.
While we support the Nigerian Customs Service ( NCS), the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON), the Federal Consumer and Competition Council (FCCPC) and the National Agency for Food and Drug (NAFDAC) praise management and control, among other things to facilitate trade, Erewa-Meggison also urged the government , “To demonstrate a willingness to work with private sector actors to collaborate in creating sustainable regulatory frameworks that will safeguard current investments in the country and create additional investment opportunities that will benefit our economy.”
Furthermore, Erewa-Meggison called for regulatory support to enable the transformation of BAT in Nigeria and West and Central Africa.
“At BAT we are transforming our business on a global scale. We have a new purpose called A Better Tomorrow. For us, a better tomorrow means (1) reducing the health and environmental impact of our business; and (2) to offer our consumers a greater choice of enjoyable and less risky products. For this to happen at a local level in Nigeria (and indeed West and Central Africa), the right regulatory environment must be in place to allow us to transform our business in a way that reduces the risk our products pose to our consumers .“
In addition, during a panel discussion, some industry stakeholders urged state regulators to place less emphasis on revenue generation and a more business enablement focus in an offer to ensure industrial and national development.
Set the tone for the panel discussion on “Building a Cooperative Regulatory Environment for Enterprise Competitiveness, Job Creation and National Development”, the Director -General, MAN, Engr. Segun Ajayi-Kadir said the regulator’s duty is not only to ensure that manufacturers do not exploit or improperly exploit consumers, but also to protect the regulated industries.
“ It is also the regulator’s duty to ensure that we have a situation where the industry player feels very safe, is legally protected, their assets and investments are safe, and survival is guaranteed. People also need to be protected from industry manipulation and unfair treatment,” he noted Pointing out that the government’s lack of resources to maintain regulators is often responsible for the aggressive and inadequate internal revenue drive.
The director general of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC ), Mr. Lamido Yuguda, represented by the Executive Director of Corporate Services, presented a policy paper at the meeting. SEC, Ibrahim Boye, said that the SEC has continued to strive to fulfill its mandate by creating an enabling environment for market operations.
Previously, the President of Nigeria, NECA , Mr. Taiwo Adeniyi said that the inaugural summit will serve as a credible national platform where the link between a healthy private sector and sustainable national inclusive growth will be aimed at promoting enterprise development as the main source of national growth.< /p>
In another panel session, titled “Deepening Fiscal and Monetary Policy for Business Growth: Imperative for a Collaborative, Growth-Oriented Engagement,” panellists, including the CEO of the Center for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE), Dr Muda Yusuf and Fiscal Policy Partner and Africa Tax Leader at PwC, Mr Taiwo Oyedele underlined the importance of the Poli tics in the investment environment and noted that the job creation likely to be driven by the private sector can only be achieved in a conducive policy environment. They found that in addition to infrastructure, fiscal and monetary policies are at the core of a favorable business environment.
Source: Legit. ng