An industrialist, Hayatudeen Mohammed, says Nigeria must deploy technology and plan well to remain competitive in the global economy.
Hayatudeen, who said this 39th Kaduna International Trade Fair Seminar with the theme, “Promoting Commerce, Industry and Agriculture for International Competitiveness” as the Guest Speaker opined that no development occur without planning and action.
Mohammed called for a national vision, based on development planning to articulate where the country would be in the next 30 years.
According to him, the country’s industrial development should be tailored toward producing what Nigeria has competitive advantage.
“There is also the need to provide incentives for investors and industries as encouragement and make effort to fix the country’s infrastructure, particularly power and transport network.”
He noted that the country was faced with monumental challenges to achieve international competitiveness.
“We are dealing with monumental problem in Nigeria, a country with no guarantee of security, high cost of doing business, access to finance nearly impossible and insufficient skilled labour. Poverty, conflict and violence, with human development index of 152 out of 180; global competition index 124 out of 140 countries and prosperity index of 125 out 142 countries.
“Not only that, income disparity is quite wide and continue to widen with the poor getting poorer at an alarming rate while the rich are getting richer. It is, therefore, very difficult to talk about international competitiveness under such circumstances, “Mohammed said.
He said that to be competitive was to be the best in any given economic endeavour at affordable price and attractive to end users.
“But above all, the focus should be improving businesses to improve quality of the lives of the people and raising the level of prosperity for Nigerians, propel development forward and transform the economy. Having the resources is not enough, what we need is developing our skills, hard work, vision and imagination
“We also need to focus on improving the quality of life by increasing access to quality education, health services, good infrastructure and increase employment opportunities, “he said.