Economist sees areas to improve business in South East


Dr Mark Abani, Economist, has identified seven areas that states in the South-East have to work on to further improve the region’s Ease of Doing Business (EODB).

Abani, a consultant with Partnership to Engage, Reform and Learn (PERL), an NGO, made this known in a presentation titled; “Ease-of-Doing-Business in the South-East – The Journey so Far.’’

He spoke at the ongoing South-East Nigeria Economic Summit (SEES) on Wednesday in Enugu.

The summit, sponsored by the South East Region Economic Development Corporation (SEREDEC), was themed; “South East Nigeria; The Investment Destination.’’

Abani noted that since 2017 states in the South-East keyed into the Ease-of-Doing-Business initiative, the region had improved in its business environment and openness to both local and foreign investors.

He, however, identified the seven critical ways the region could further improve to include promoting the use of technology and publishing processes, steps, fees and times involved in setting up a business.

Others are recruiting staff (civil servants) and training them properly; reviewing all obsolete laws that concern business and business growth as well as integrating actions such as state business registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).

Abani also identified use of risk assessment process to monitor business environment growth as well as reduction in fees and steps associated with doing business where possible as other areas.

Earlier, the Chairman of SEREDEC and former Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji, noted that SEREDEC had done much work in promoting ease of doing business in the region.

He said that the condition of doing business in the five states of Enugu, Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi and Imo had been relaxed and improved.

“The governors have supported by putting more infrastructure in the region and supporting joint regional economic plans.

“I believe that we will achieve the needed economic growth in the near future if we continue in this line,’’ Nnaji said.

The two-day summit was attended by captains of industry, entrepreneurs, government functionaries, market leaders and leaders of thought.