Buhari minister confesses, says Nigeria is a tough country to do business

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– Minister of agriculture and rural development Chief Audu Ogbeh is a rare type of politician in Nigeria

– Both in and out of government, Ogbeh has always spoken his mind without fear or favour

– He took the banking sector to the cleaners recently because of their lending rates

Minister of agriculture and rural development Chief Audu Ogbeh has lamented that Nigeria is a tough country to do business.

Nigeria's minister of agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh

Ogbeh warned that it will be difficult for businesses to survive with the current lending rates of banks

Ogbeh made the comment while speaking at the 2016 Annual Conference of the Business and Professional Women (BPW) of Nigeria in Abuja with the theme: “Leaders growing leaders”.

The minister condemned the lending rate being charged by banks in Nigeria, warning that with the development, it will be difficult for businesses to survive.

According to The Nation, he expressed concern that with high lending rate, doing business in the country would be discouraging.

READ ALSO: Ericsson concludes plan to sack Nigerians, move operating centre to India

Ogbeh said: “Nigeria is a tough environment to do business in. One of the issues that I have always complained about is the outrageous interest rate, which banks charge today.

“For the last 30 years, it has become nearly impossible for small and medium businesses to survive. The interest rate has been hovering around 18 per cent to 22 per cent and now to 30 per cent.

“That kind of interest rate may be good for producing cocaine but it’s definitely not for any legitimate business.

“But for some strange reason, it has been impossible to change it. The argument has always been that interest rate cannot be lower than inflation rate and yet we expect this economy to grow. We have imaginary dreams of growth because what has been growing is poverty.” 

Ogbeh’s comment is coming a week after British Airways described Nigeria’s business operating environment as harsh. 

The airline’s head of Middle East, Africa and Central Asia sales, Paola De Renzis said the company had been facing a very difficult times doing its business in Nigeria due to the current economic hardship.

READ ALSO: President Buhari to restructure aviation agencies, hundreds to lose their jobs

Meanwhile, unemployment is on the rise in Nigeria as downsizing is the order of the day in the productive and services’ sectors.

Latest indicators show that more Nigerians now seek jobs that hitherto never appealed to them just to meet their daily needs.

The post Buhari minister confesses, says Nigeria is a tough country to do business appeared first on Nigeria News today & Breaking news | Read Naij.com 24/7.

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