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Foreigners adopt wait-and-see attitude

by Business News Report

Many foreigners have adopted a wait and see attitude towards the federal government’s decision to review the Nigerian Enterprises Promotion act of 1977 while others have remained indifferent.
An opinion poll conducted by The Republic in some embassies and high commissions in Nigeria reveals that foreign investors maintain a non-challant attitude towards the proposals.
Officials of the America Embassy, said, it would amount to pre-empting the re-view of the act. Until the act is actually reviewed we cannot say with certainly what the response of America businessmen would be.
Americans, the officials continued, believe in the enterprise and would not stake their money in an economy that is highly regulated by government. A source at United States Information Service in Lagos further said that the act may be reviewed in favour of foreign investors but if other conditions are not favourable for investment America businessmen may not be interested in investing in Nigeria.
At the Italian Trade Commission, officials said that the Italian Private Sector was not very much hindered by the NEP Act. What the Italian business community are actually waiting for is the outcome of the debt rescheduling. If Nigeria reaches a final and favourable agreement on debt rescheduling with her creditors and restore its international finance credibility, Italian certainly would come to invest in Nigeria.

A German trade delegate disclosed that although the ownership structure of business ventures might change there could be other constraints in the ways of foreign investors. He emphasised that continuity of programmes and policies are very vital to foreign investment.
Others constraints that hinder foreign investors, sources said include the rigorous requirements needed to get a business going Nigeria. Such include company registration, obtaining business permit, expartiate quota which require investors to move between ministries sometimes ending up in frustration.

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