KADCCIMA, NECA challenge Kaduna Government
WorldStage Newsonline– The Kaduna Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (KADCCIMA) and Nigeria’s Employers Consultative Association (NECA), with support from ENABLE2 a DFiD funded programme, have called on the Kaduna State Government to partner with the private sector in order to reduce the multiple fiscal burdens placed on businesses in the state. Business environment has witnessed sharp decline over the past four years in Kaduna State as a result of insecurity, lack of infrastructure, and regulation, it was learnt.
The KADCCIMA-NECA coalition, in a public-private dialogue meeting with the State Government in Kaduna on Tuesday noted that Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector accounted for a market capitalization of about N20 billion in the state which is equivalent to almost 11% of the state’s 2016 budget of N172.32 billion. The coalition lamented the state of the multiple fiscal burdens in the form of multiple taxes, levies, charges & registration fees, which according to their them, cost FMCG operators 30% sales loss between 2010 and 2015 and had thrown several small and medium businesses out of the market.
Whilst acknowledging the efforts of Mallam El-Rufai’s led government to boost the business environment in the state through the implementation of different entrepreneurial programmes, NECA researcher, Rilwan Aderinto, in his presentation, stated that “the cost of business has increased by 68% between 2010 and 2015, while the average growth rate for small and medium businesses is at 12%.
“Starting up new business in Kaduna is challenging. The length of time it takes to set up a business by FMCGs in the state increased from roughly 12 months in 2010 to 13 months in 2015. However, setting up a retail outlet like kiosk or roadside stall for FMCG would take six months.
“What makes Kaduna State standout is the size of the fiscal burden that it imposes on FMCGs in the state. Not only is the absolute level of fiscal size as a share of the revenue and profits of FMCGs in the state high, these businesses are exposed to payment of a very high number of taxes.”
On the findings of FMCG in the state, the Governor, represented by Commissioner for Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Dr. Shehu Usman Adamu noted that the state cannot be said to be encouraging multiple tax system considering the fact that it reduced multiple taxation from over 15 to between three to five on coming into office.
He stated that the findings did not reflect the current situation of FMCGs in Kaduna state saying, “We in Kaduna State appreciate the roles played by Fast Moving Consumable Goods in employment creation and in making available to the millions of our people goods that enhance their living standards.
“While we agree that FCMG companies are profit centres and the cost of business is rising, care must be taken not to alienate many of our citizens who may be facing difficulties by adequately exploring a balance between profits and customer utility driven by the affordability of products.
“As a business and Investment friendly state, the Government and people of Kaduna State will always welcome and promote such activities. We will always facilitate businesses and investments and we look forward to having most FMCG companies setting up manufacturing industries in our State as to promote our industrialization drive, diversify our economic base and provide job opportunities for our citizens. The state has also set up an Ease of doing Business committee headed by the governor with KADCCIMA as a member to identify bottlenecks to business and continue working on them.”