The Vice-President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, has said the Federal Government will address the challenges that may be encountered in the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement.
He said this on Monday in Lagos during an AfCFTA dialogue session hosted by Financial Derivatives Company Limited.
He said the Federal Government had set up a National Action Committee on its implementation.
Osinbajo who was represented by Mrs Jumoke Oduwole,said, “While implementation of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan is already in progress, an AfCFTA National Action Committee comprising various stakeholders has been established by Mr President to coordinate the implementation of all the AfCFTA readiness interventions.
“ It is in this light that we warmly welcome you to today’s opportunity of receiving direct policy contributions from this calibre of private sector stakeholders.”
He noted that Nigeria signed as the 54th signatory to the agreement with wide acclaim at the 12th extra-ordinary summit of heads’ of states of African Union in Niamey, Niger earlier in the month.
Osinbajo said the concerns raised by some Nigerian stakeholders about the risks with the AfCFTA were not without merit.
Prior to the agreement, he said, the policy thrust of the administration had identified and focused on many of the priority areas in the competitiveness pillar of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan 2017-2020, which directly spoke to the hard infrastructure challenges as well as the reforms required to deliver an enabling business environment for businesses operating in Nigeria to thrive under its competitiveness pillar initiatives since 2016.
The vice- president said, “The provision of adequate, stable and uninterrupted power for businesses is central to Nigeria’s AfCFTA readiness and we are moving in the right direction with the implementation of the Power Sector Recovery Plan.
“Only last week, Mr President signed a power agreement with Siemens that will significantly ramp up Nigeria’s power generation to 25,000MW by 2025. As this is being accelerated, we are intensifying efforts towards positioning the private sector to utilise 2,000MW of stranded power under the eligible customer (willing buyer-willing seller) declaration.”