Economy, Jobs, Welfare and Well-being
The current Nigerian Economy leaves most Nigerians behind. Only, few Nigerians benefit and profit. Inequality continues to widen with high levels of poverty, negatively impacting health and wellbeing. This is both morally and economically wrong and is not sustainable. Nigeria continues to underperform on key development indicators as it fails to put its large population to ‘work to gain’. This also has national security implications. The Nigerian Economy requires bold, innovative and urgent response.
- The Nigerian economy is not working for most Nigerians.
- The level of unemployment is too high and most of our young people are underemployed. We are wasting the productive years of young Nigerians and losing out on our ‘demographic advantage’. This has huge ramifications and ‘opportunity costs’ now, and also in future.
- There are far too many Nigerians that are not in education, employment or training (NEET).
- Starting and running a business in Nigeria is very difficult: from registering the business to financing the business to accessing market opportunities to multiple taxation (and high tax rate)
- Salaries especially in the Public Service are low relative to cost of living; and access to credit is difficult and cost of credit is high.
- Right to and ownership of property and economic assets and means, is difficult and limited (and limiting).
- Poor quality and poor supply of social housing; poor public health care, schools, transportation, utilities; and fuels; and the masses cannot afford and often suffer financial catastrophe.
- Poor living conditions of most Nigerians which affects their health and wellbeing.
- High level of poverty and limited social safety-nets; and an economy that limits social mobility.
- Economy not producing enough and is heavily dependent on imports.
- Economy heavily dependent on ‘rent’; encourages entitlement culture and behaviour; rewards mediocrity and laziness; and stifles curiosity, inquiry, innovation and creativity.
- The level of Corruption is too high, supporting a ‘dark’ economy that takes out of the ‘real’ economy, but neither accounts for, nor pays tax.
Lack of a shared coherent and ambitious social and economic strategy to continuously improve the legislative, regulatory, financial and infrastructure supports in continuity with our foreign policy priorities to enable us to produce the goods and services that Nigerians need and demand. Nigeria is therefore unable to unlock and develop demand and supply value chains to put millions of Nigerians now unemployed or underemployed to decent productive tax-paying jobs, substitute imports and grow inclusive economy that Nigeria can sustain.
- ANN recognises that particularly high level of unemployment among young Nigerians is an emergency and a threat to Nigeria. ANN government will launch the “Nigerian Economy that Works for All”, working closely with the federal legislature and States to reform regulations to encourage and reinforce good business behaviour. The goal will be to fundamentally restructure the Nigerian Administrative State; and economy. This will create the enabling environment to attract Domestic and Foreign Investments.
- ANN believes that Nigeria has a realistic opportunity to become one of the leading manufacturing destinations in the world. This will require setting and enforcing high manufacturing standards. As major economies around the world transition into services and their citizens get richer; as some economic blocks begin to unravel; and the global financial system expands opportunities, ANN believes that Nigeria is in no doubt, an exciting investment and manufacturing destination.
- ANN government will prioritise all the elements that will improve Nigeria’s “distance to frontiers” on “ease of doing business”, linked to job creation and economic growth strategies. This will require reforming the ways of thinking and working in Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). They must begin to lead from the front in identifying and enabling emerging industries/sectors to set the “rules of the road”.
- ANN government will partner with Labour Unions and provide competent, honest and patriotic political/ministerial leadership to drive and improve performance.
- ANN government will use competent and Patriotic Dedicated Desk Officers with specific responsibilities and targets. MDAs would be assessed quarterly based on qualitative and quantitative outputs/outcome measures such as:
- the number of regulatory bottlenecks unravelled;
- the number of licences issued to private businesses;
- information and supports provided to private businesses in each ministerial sector;
- transformation of websites of MDAs into information, service delivery and accountability platforms (open government); and
- employment created in the sector per quarter.
The ANN government will evaluate and would work within the existing MDAs, to make them more efficient and performance-driven, and to align MDAs with National Domestic and Foreign Policy priorities, in the short to long term, to achieve social and economic goals, prioritising:
- unite and inspire;
- inclusive economy that continues to create decent tax-paying jobs and improve welfare and wellbeing;
- national security; and
- strengthen federalism.
We have identified some of the priorities that ANN government would refocus the urgent attention of existing Federal MDAs, working across government, to enable us rebuild a more efficient and performance-driven bureaucracy, fit for the 21st century, as the engine of government, with great ambition:
- an environment that supports businesses;
- explores and exploits value chains;
- creates millions of tax-paying jobs for Nigerians; and
- growing an economy that works for all Nigerians, while enabling Nigeria to compete and pay its way in the world