The Oil & Gas Free Zones Authority (OGFZA) has been ranked No 1 in the Federal Government Report on Ease of Doing Business Executive Order (EO1).
Over the years government and its agencies are seen more as an obstacle, a hindrance rather than a facilitator and this is across all arms of government; the executive, the judiciary and the legislature. One of the more obvious consequences [of the then status quo] is that our business environment is one of the most stressful in the world. There is no question at all about that and this clearly hinders economic growth. If people don’t invest, no jobs are created and wherever our children go to school, no matter what is spent on our children’s education, if they are not able to find jobs, that clearly is a problem. Every time that a public servant is an obstacle to anyone seeking approvals or licences, he or she attacks the Nigerian economy… every time that we create obstacles to doing business we attack our prosperity as a nation, we also attack the future.
To address the challenges, Executive Order 001 (EO1) was signed on 18 May, 2017, by Vice President, Professor Yemi Osibanjo (SAN), then Acting President. The very first executive order of this administration, its objective is to promote transparency and efficiency in the business environment. EO1 has been acknowledged as one of the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN)’s most innovative strategic initiatives to deliver quick, pragmatic changes for Nigerians. EO1 has the following indicators: Entry & Exit of people, Starting a Business, Trading Across Boarders, Registering Property, Paying Taxes, Dealing with Constructing Permit, Getting Credit and Getting Electricity.
Commenting on the report, Mr Umana Okon Umana, the MD/CEO of OGFZA commended the staff and management for the excellent performance and urged them to continue to faithfully implement the policies and programmes of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
According to the report, 44 MDAs were benchmarked against EOI indicators and OGFZA ranked number one in the list.