By Deji Abdulwahab
The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) on Thursday urged the Federal Government to diversify the nation’s economy and tackle insecurity in the Niger Delta region.
The chamber’s President, Mr Tony Ejinkeonye, gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.
According to him, this will assist to extricate Nigeria’s economy from its current economic recession.
“To extricate Nigeria from current recession, government should continue with the efforts to diversify the economy from oil and also stabilise oil and gas sector by resolving the insecurity in Niger Delta region urgently.’’
Ejinkeonye stressed the need for government to set up an integrated system that would involve technology such as the use of drones.
According to him, government should engage the communities in the Niger Delta as well as the military to guide the pipeline.
“In addition, government needs to stimulate the economy through heavy investments in infrastructure and creating conducive business environment through good macroeconomic policies,’’ he said.
He also urged the Federal Government to monitor and enforce the insurance guidelines to improve the lot of insurers in the country.
“According to the provisions of Section 50 of the Nigeria Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act 2010, all operators and stakeholders in the Nigerian oil and gas industry shall insure all insurable risks.’’
“These risks should be related to its oil and gas business, operations or contracts with an insurance company, through an insurance broker registered in Nigeria under the provisions of Insurance Act as amended.
The Act further states that no insurance risk in Nigerian oil and gas industry shall be placed offshore without the written approval of the National Insurance Commission(NIC) .
“The Act also states that NIC shall ensure that Nigerian local capacity has been fully exhausted.’’
Ejinkeonye said reports indicated that significant high-value insurance risks that should have been insured in Nigeria flooded the international markets contrary to the Act.
He added that the current situation was far better than the pre-Act era.
“Nigerian insurers still lack the adequate levels of capital to support their exposures to high-value risks, also they lack the- technical-know-how to support the underwriting of oil and gas business,’’ he said (Edited by Gregory Mmaduakolam/Idris Abdulrahman)