Since the economy has been reeling in the mire of recession, several people, experts and non-experts, have come out to give their suggestions about the best way out of the recession for the country. Despite the varied opinions on the matter, certain facts seem to ring through them all.
One of these is the fact that Nigeria must diversify its economy from the current over-dependence on oil to ensuring that various other sectors of the economy can contribute actively to the economy. Even the FG says that diversification of the economy remains the fastest way out.
However, the actions of the FG, or more specifically, those put in charge by the FG, are contradictory to the clamor for diversification. Seemingly glaring opportunities for diversification are consistently overlooked.
For example, while countries with very little capacities compared to Nigeria are making good use of the African Growth and Opportunities Act (AGOA), which is a pact between the United States of America and African countries for increased trade relations, Nigeria continues to slumber away.
In fact, the African Growth and Opportunities Act (AGOA) meeting recently held showed that Nigeria is not really serious about diversifying her economy.
One would have thought that such an opportunity to pitch the countries many other non-oil resources to the United States of America would be taken seriously by the FG. Rather, Vanguard reports that the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investments was absent while the Minister of Labor and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, who spoke had no prepared speech.
Furthermore, the National Export Promotion Council (NEPC) had no tangible representation while the representative of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment showed up at the opening ceremony and disappeared thereafter.
In contrast, other African countries present had powerful delegations who used the opportunity to network and find further opportunities for increased exports to the U.S.
No wonder, Lesotho, a country smaller than many Nigerian states boasts of a higher non-oil export volume to the United States than Nigeria does. Where the wonder comes in is how the FG expects the non-oil sectors to develop when they pass up such important opportunities. And in relation to that, how exactly will it take before the economy can lift itself from the recession.