The Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) says Nigeria needs bold and coherent policy changes to attract more foreign direct investment (FDI) in the post-COVID-19 era.
Yewande Sadiku (pictured), NIPC executive secretary, who spoke at a webinar on Thursday, said the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) estimates that global FDI inflows will fall by at least 30 percent as a result of the pandemic.
â€œThe expectation is that the impact will be worse from FDIs perspective than what we saw during the global financial crisis,â€ Sadiku said.
â€œI think the headwinds that we see 2020, 2021, 2022 suggests that we will need bold and coherent policy changes and deep economic reforms to reverse the trend that we expect.
“At NIPC we track investment announcements and what we have seen based on those announcements is that there has been some pressure in recent times, COVID-19 obviously is expected to put that under more pressure, so investments supporting policies, we’ll need to undertake urgently in order to reverse the trend.
“And what we expect from this, first, is a flight to quality and the winners invariably would become economies that continue to provide investors with an attractive prospect but in a conducive business environment.
“We believe that there will be an increase in the domestic production capacity, in particular of items that are considered essential or basic to every country and theyâ€™ll be different from country to country.
“Across government agencies, we need a concerted coordinated effort at managing investor concerns to minimize what we expect as job losses and to restore confidence”
She noted that some sectors have benefitted from the pandemic while others have made losses from it.
“For those that have suffered from the pandemic, I think it’d be useful to remove administrative and regulatory bottlenecks to allow those sectors to flourish.”
Sadiku added that it is important to ‘aggressively’ encourage more Nigerians to invest in the country.