The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has canvassed the need to sustain the expansionary policy stance of the current administration while ensuring sufficient synthesis of monetary and fiscal policies. The association asked that lending rates should be moderated through development banks, financial windows while taxes and levies should either drop or remain unchanged, and appropriate incentives that will encourage investments created.
MAN president, Dr. Frank Udemba Jacobs who spoke to The Nation in Lagos attributed the poor performance of the sector to high cost of doing business, especially high interest rate as well as delays in the implementation of the budget during the year. He therefore called for the recapitalisation of the Bank of Industry (BOI) and the Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN).
He revealed that the manufacturing sector in the second quarter of 2017 fell to 0.64 per cent and 2.58 per cent in the third quarter of the year an indication that the sector may be drifting back into economic recession.
He called for the downward review of the Company Income Tax (CIT) from the current 30 per cent to about 20 per cent with targets for employment of Nigerians to technically reflect the prevailing operating environment and economic situation of the country.
The MAN boss further revealed that the improvement in foreign exchange management policies of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), by making allocation to the manufacturing sector a priority has robbed off positively on them and improved the sector?s successes. He however, attributed the positive outlook of the sector to the improved relationship between the two.
He said: ?Our robust engagement with the management of the Central Bank of Nigeria also led to the review of the list of 41 items not valid for official forex allocation.
claimed that MAN?s advocacy helped to facilitate the resuscitation of Export Expansion Grant (EEG) and the modification of the same to include transferability of the Negotiable Export Credit Certificate (NECC), which can now be used for settlement of all Federal Government taxes such as Company Income Tax, Value Added Tax (VAT) and With Holding Tax (WHT), among others.
Jacobs said the Association will ensure the remaining raw materials excluded from the official forex window are restored, maintain the advocacy against the admission of Morocco to the membership of ECOWAS due to perceived negative implications of this to the economy of Nigeria and ensure greater improvement in the business operating environment.
He called for the abolition of multiple taxation and its unorthodox mode of collection by the three tiers of government, enactment of relevant manufacturing-friendly laws and abrogation of adverse and obsolete business related legislations; encouragement of the sustenance of the campaign for patronage of Made-in-Nigeria products and sustaining advocacy for sector-specific incentives for national economic development.