‘International Competivity’: A Pillar Factor of soaring our Nation’s Economy

‘International Competivity’: A Pillar Factor of soaring our Nation’s Economy

(The Worms around our Eligibility as a Candidate)

The backward state of our nation is to a large extent hinged on the incapacity of her not being an eligible candidate for international competition. Our position in any international productivity or economy influence is like that of the back benchers of a classroom.

The outstanding qualities which allows for  a country to be merited as a qualified and an eligible candidate on international competition grounds from the production or industrialisation umbrella is that of price; a function of cost at all levels and quality; also but not only function of cost  and technology. However, the usability of a product to satisfy the consumer to their expectation as it relates to the price being sold is of utmost consideration.

The overall cost of production is not only a factor or process that surfaces within the individual industries involved in the production of goods but in fact and much more a factor of its environment (our nation) and the overseeing policies being implemented. However, this article is not tolling into the line of the policies.

For instance, if a product is produced in china and even after reaching the final consumers in Nigeria, its affordability is unquestionable as opposed to that of the prices of products being produced in the nation; individuals, production bodies and agencies and the national as a whole should be gingered at this appalling scenario or phenomenon. Taking into consideration the exorbitant import duties, high profile corruption at the customs and port levels and other ordinarily reproaching and price-hiking practices that run through the chain from the port to the final consumers, yet the affordability of these products by the Nigeria masses is over that of the indigenously produced ones, then we are far from the better Nigeria everyone is hoping and striving for.

Even in the Agricultural  sector which is suppose to the a natural edge for our eligibility for international completion, we are yet again sitting at a regardless and shameful corner of those who don’t matter in such a sector unlike years yonder when cocoa and groundnut were at least a push for us in the frontline of international competition.

The reason behind this may not be strange or new to some but I shall choose to concentrate my lens on the below;

Cost of Production: The cost of production is not limited to all cost incurred in the compound of the industries. In most developing countries like ours, the cost incurred outside the walls of the industries compound is that which revolves round the same figure as that which is within. This is wrong and the first major setback in the production line as it affects the end price.

Most residential developers that go into residential properties find themselves catering for as much as that which the Local government should ordinarily cater for. How do I mean? Mr. Hakeem Ogunniran, Managing Director of UACN Property, in a recent news, was giving an example of how 30 to 40 instead of about 5 percent of the budget prepared for a residential development for low- cost housing had being spent on road construction to the site, water supply, electricity and a host of other infrastructural provisions which should in actual fact be a full or partial duty of the government. Most commercial and industrial development require heavier than the residential requirement of infrastructure and as such they incurred more cost in an attempt to make those provision available unto them which in turn reflects in the end price of the product.

The one word that covers the outside-industry-wall factors but plays a vital role in the within the industry walls as it pertains to cost in the article is called infrastructure. Although a number of definitions is attributed to this but for the purpose of the paper, I choose to describe infrastructure as all provisions, tangible or intangible, provided either by the government(mostly by them), or individuals or association of individuals ,or partnership of both that positively enables dwellers activities and also act like lubricant to the dwellers of such of nation there by  making possible for less cost and stress to be incurred within  and outside their dwelling or production compounds and making living easier and its standard higher.

The definition above is quite encompassing, however, notable there-in is the fact that it likened infrastructure to a lubricant. More so, an example of intangible infrastructure is policy. Thus polices are as well a type of infrastructure.

In a paper presented at the 43rd annual conference of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, March  2013 by Dr. Ghaji Bello, the acting Director general Infrastructure Concession Delivery Commission said that for ‘’every dollar spent on public infrastructure investment, the gross domestic product of the country will increase by approximately 0.05to 0.25 dollars’’. Picture what a thousand dollar will yield, a million dollar will yield and a billion dollar will yield.

On the other hand, the second Vice President of NIESV, Dr Bolarinde Patunola-Ajayi, made this disclosure that infrastructure is the underpinning on which strong national development is built while also speaking recently during the 43rd Annual Conference of the Nigeria Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) held in Benin City In a lecture entitled: “Infrastructure development and economic empowerment. He spoke on the premise of a survey report on infrastructure and household by the Lagos State Central Office of Statistics 2006, which revealed that 90 per cent of households in Lagos relied on street vendors and private neighbourhood for water and only about 39 per cent treat their water for safe drinking. He also made mention of  facts also emerged that based on information provided by the Global Competitiveness Index (2012-2013), Nigeria ranked 130 in overall infrastructural development.  Deducible from the above stated facts is pointer to the fact that the overall position of our infrastructure state is one close to ground zero

 Moreover, in an industrial or production environment, the basic infrastructure required outside policy is that of road and electricity which are evidently grossly inadequate and immensely in shortage of what is required.

Roads: In as much as we have inadequate roads, the states of the ones we have are quite poor. The road network is quite terrible and it is definitely poorly scored on a scale of efficiency as the lubrication elemental purpose that should be inherent in an infrastructure is obviously lacking even when compared with other industrialised nations like china which export most of our products to us.

The creation of highly efficient road network gives birth to highly effective road usage. That is purpose actualising road over lengthy and breathy road like that lead hell like the bible describes. Although the roads may be fairly smooth and well constructed but it definitely do not save cost. It is not a matter of hard work anymore but that of smart work. There are a number of roads and drainages construction going on especially in the Lagos state, but the focus point should be on the strategic connectivity and network of them else, more money would needful to be spent on its maintenance because cars have more reasons to remain on the road which in turn creates or contributes to wear and tear, larger fuel consumption and production.

Planes are channelled through shortest possible distance in space, ships are directioned in the same line in the ocean, would it be insane or wrong is cars to employ the same strategy on roads? Thus the efficiency creation strategy if imbibed in road construction would lead to cost-cutting effectiveness. If cars stay fewer hours on the roads, less fuel would be consumed or required and less cost is in turn incurred at the federal level- Marginal profit/ surplus.

Electricity: The president of our nation has an ocean of promises, perhaps personal or general wishes, concerning this matter- fortunately or unfortunately enough for him or and  us, each promise is always carried over the next year which never comes or ends. In my opinion, I try to find a way out of the mystery why the leaders of our nation never choose to see or pick an option of the best way out of our indigenous and generational problem.

We all know fuel is ready substitute for electricity in the nation as most appliance, devices and machines gets powered by it or it powers our generator-an alternative source of electricity.

Over decades, the commitment of funds to the production of fuel and its derivatives is well above that which would have or which is required for adequate power supply in the nation. The availability of steady power supply in turn translates to less fuel being demanded by the regular users (the masses) because only vehicle would remain majorly needful of it and with an advent of efficient road network, more of less fuel will also be demanded. The over time implication of this is that less fuel production would become operational as less fuel would be required or demanded and cost of it production would be minimized leading to a marginal profit which can be directed to other needful areas as subsidy or capital.

The torch of commitment at the federal level should be directed to the power sector of electricity generation over the fuel sector. Reason being that less of cost over that which is required daily in fuel sector is required. More so, there are more light consumers than fuel consumers industrially and in other areas. A government with its citizen living standard at heart who is indeed looking for a way out of various up surging menace most of which are traceable to inhabitability of the social and economy environment that our  leaders have created for it citizen should meet more of most people need over meeting most of we don’t need, perhaps only want. Giving solutions at the smallest cost possible is wisdom.

In summary, among the advantages of the strategies being shared above in light of efficiency and effectiveness of road and also that is electricity is that it increases our standard of living, reduces cost at federal level thereby creating extra funds (finance) to be available for other projects needful to the nation’s sustainability, it also supports the eco green movement and lot more.

There is a mafia quote that says ‘every matter has the handles’. For me I do believe ‘’every matter has two handles or more’ and this is the same with a nation’s budgetary system although unknown to some nations mostly the developing nations  I see the budgetary system as a similar to a two mouth open end tube because cost can be reduced abinitio before funds gets disbursed out to different projects. Cost saved at this point can relate or can be likened to that gotten as revenue ,that is the streamline of cash inflows gotten from projects after being established over time. Thus, whether it is gotten in coupons or streamlines through a completed project or in bulk and abinitio, the essence of both is to create for funds availability.

For developing countries, they often fail at getting revenue from projects because projects hardly get completed and the completed ones are poorly managed. Thus it is best of such nation to find ways to reduce cost and diversify cost saved to other needful areas of their economy.

If these two infrastructural provisions are geared to the peak of efficiency and effectiveness, the prices of a product, an overall function of cost at all levels would be that which will make the country an eligible candidate of international competition. Thus our products get to stand amongst international competitors as we shall be bidding in the same front line like and with the developed countries. Exportation of our goods becomes in more prospects and view. The impact of exportation outweighing its importation is one that economist best appreciate the value. One of its advantages is a positive drastic shift in the economy of such country because exchange rates become friendlier and GDP gets an upward pull. Hence more and more international businesses off shoots as exchange rates are within a friendly bracket. In concision, countries with same currency or close exchange rate are into more business with each other than those of larger difference.

In conclusion, in an attempt for a lasting a solution, it is not enough for a nation to go into production for its citizens alone or a fraction of them as the target consumers. Thus if a country goes into production for solely its citizen or a fraction of them without views  and actions geared towards exportation and international competition, the end of such is an economy devaluation and relegation.

Thank you



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