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Peter Obi decries worsening business environment in Nigeria

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Peter Obi Labour Party

In a recent statement on X, Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, expressed grave concerns over the deteriorating business climate in Nigeria.

His remarks come in the wake of alarming financial reports from multinational corporations, Nestle Nigeria and MTN Nigeria Plc.

“Yesterday, we were confronted with the worrisome audited report of the multinational firm, Nestle Nigeria, which occupied much of the business media space,” Obi stated.

“This morning, again, the media is awash with the unpalatable financial report from another multi-national company, MTN Nigeria Plc, showing a similar huge loss of profit before tax of N177.8 billion, which resulted in a wipe-out of shareholders’ funds.”

The losses reported by these major corporations were attributed to operational changes in the Nigerian foreign exchange market, particularly the abolition of the parallel structure announced by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in June 2023.

“These business losses, and in some cases, closures and exit of local and foreign businesses are obviously a result of our worsening business environment,” Obi remarked.

“Following the losses reported by these major multinationals, one can imagine what the small businesses are going through, especially now that they are facing a double whammy from increased costs occasioned by poor fiscal policies, and high interest rates, occasioned by recent monetary policies.”

As a trader himself, Obi emphasized his personal experience with the challenges of the current business landscape.

He highlighted the plight of small businesses, noting that their struggles may not always receive attention from major media outlets.

“Many of the affected businesses may have closed down, leading to additional job losses, and many more may follow suit if this harsh business environment is not reversed,” Obi warned.

He concluded by urging urgent action to reverse the negative trend, stressing the importance of maintaining a friendly business environment to support both local and international businesses.

“A New Nigeria is only possible if we can sustain a friendly business environment to keep big and small as well as local and international businesses thriving in our national economy,” Obi asserted.

Read more: Sudan: UN Report Reveals Ethnic Killings in Darfur by RSF

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