A lead consultant to the Economic Community of West Africa States, ECOWAS, on private sector development, Prof. Ken Ife says the economic challenges arising from the Coronavirus pandemic, present special opportunities for Nigeria’s development.
Speaking to Signaturetv in an exclusive interview, Prof Ife said that the lock down of many countries from which Nigeria imports many of its finished products should make Nigeria to look inwards and deploy resources to manufacture some of the products it has imported over the years.
He cited the pharmaceutical sector as one area where Nigeria should seize the present opportunity and grow out of wholesale importation of critical drugs.
Prof Ife, who said that Nigeria’s response through steps initiated by the Central Bank in the face of present economic challenges was appropriate and who commended president Mohammadu Buhari’s anchor borrowers programme, said that the agriculture sector which loses much of its production to post harvest losses can be leveraged on to add values to the chain and reduce dependence on imported items.
Prof. Ken Ife, who is also a visiting professor at the Nigerian Defense Academy and an Economic Strategist at the NEPAD office of the Nigerian presidency advised that as much as the collapse in the price of crude oil provides unique opportunities to loosen tight regulation of the oil industry, the removal of subsidy should be carefully managed so that unexpected destabilization of the oil sector does not occur.