Mr. Afolabi Imoukhuede, SSA to Nigerian President on Job Creation and Youth Employment, Office of the Vice President. Photo Credit: Mohammed Abdullahi, Job Creation Unit, Office of the Vice President.

By Victor Gotevbe,

The Federal Government of Nigeria has maintained its commitment to continuously engage the private sector as a partner for the country’s steady economic growth.

The Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the Nigerian President on Job Creation and Youth Employment, Office of the Vice President, Mr. Afolabi Imoukhuede, avowed this at the just concluded 7th European Union (EU)-Nigeria Business Forum, Lagos, themed: Building Partnerships for Growth and Job Creation in Lagos, where he delivered a keynote address on “How to ensure effective dialogue between private and public sector to achieve sustainable growth and job creation in Nigeria”.

Imoukhuede reiterated that the current Administration is confident that it is the private sector that must lead the way in jobs and opportunities creation while government provides the enabling environment.

He noted that it is in the interest of any country to leverage the private sector for job creation as it provides around 90% of employment in the developing world (including formal and informal jobs) according to a statistics from the International Finance Corporation (IFC).

He added that there is a consensus that job creation is a key contribution of the private sector to poverty reduction. Hence, the need for cooperation between the private and public sector and all other entities such as EU Member States and businesses within the EU, as it is one way Nigeria can grow its economy.

The SSA said, this is also a commitment for all Nigerians to hold each other accountable and must work on transcending accountability by also staying on task to ensure building of blocks in order to achieve persistent economic growth.

On the engagement between Government and private sector investors in different sectors of the economy, Imoukhuede cited the Nigerian Government’s commendable efforts through the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) set up in July 2016 under the Chairmanship of His Excellency, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. “

This has considerably remove bureaucratic constraints to doing business in Nigeria and has made the country a progressively easier place to start and grow a business”, he said.  The World Bank Ease of Doing Business Ranking has shown an improvement of Nigeria from 169th  to 145th position. And there is firm belief that by 2025, it would be ranking at the 50th position.

According to the Mr. Afolabi Imoukhuede, his office is charged with the responsibility of unlocking sustainable economic opportunities in Nigeria’s REAL Sector comprising Agriculture/Agro-allied, Construction, Retail Trade, Renewable Energy and ICT/Digital Jobs. Thereby, bringing together stakeholders to pool resources, influence and knowledge of exciting market opportunities and initiatives in a systemic manner, leveraging on Government’s renewed focus and investment.

He concluded by sharing the performance of N-Power programme, an initiative of his office that commenced in December, 2016. N-power is a platform for preparing young Nigerians for a knowledge economy, equipped with world-class skills and certification, they become innovators and movers in the domestic and global markets.  It is evident across the federation how even  non-graduates who have been beneficiaries are provided with relevant technical and business skills that enhance their work outlook and livelihood.

Diplomatic Watch brings you some photos of Mr. Imoukhuede networking after his brilliant presentation and panel discussion.