Lagos - The U.S. Secretary of Commerce, Penny Pritzker on Wednesday, gave
conditions that would motivate more American companies to invest in Nigeria.
Pritzker, who spoke to a group of business leaders in Lagos, urged the
Federal Government to urgently involve Nigeria’s business community and civil
society in the fight against corruption.
The U.S. official said that the American companies would invest in countries
that observed rule of law, maintained ethical standards and promoted
workplace safety and encouraged training.
“For U.S. businesses to come here, stay here and help you achieve your
full potential, Nigeria needs to take the tough steps that allow businesses to
“Our companies want to do business in countries that follow the rule of law,
maintain ethical standards, abide by workplace safety, encourage workforce
training and protect intellectual property.
“Businesses must have the conditions to operate free from unnecessary
regulation, government interference and corruption.
“These are the conditions that will increase confidence among international
and local business leaders and encourage further investment in Nigeria.’’
Pritzker also encouraged the Nigerian Government to implement its public
procurement laws according to international best practices.
The secretary also advised the government to sign the World Trade
Organisation’s Government Procurement Agreement.
Pritzker urged the Nigerian Government, business and civil society leaders
to close ranks in developing solutions to challenges facing the investment
Tony Elumelu, Chairman of Heirs Holdings and Founder of the Tony Elumelu
Foundation, who spoke on behalf of other business leaders, described the visit
as not only important but also strategic.
Elumelu said that Pritzker’s visit would strengthen the existing U.S. and
Nigeria commercial ties.
The industrialist said that the growing of Nigeria’s economy would reduce
poverty, create jobs as well as check terrorist activities in the country.
“We need investors, partners and technical expertise to develop our supply
chains, infrastructure and workforce skills.
“American firms and entrepreneurs can help us accomplish and gain
significant value for themselves,’’ he said.
Pritzker is leading 20 American companies on an Energy Business Development
trade mission to Ghana and Nigeria.
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