The Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) says the rising cost of living in the country is already having a negative impact on the country’s poverty and production index.
NECA’s director-general, Adewale-Smatt Oyerinde, expressed concerns in a statement on Thursday in Lagos.
“In the last one year, we have witnessed perpetual rising inflation, commodity price instability, reduced industry capacity utilisation and a gradual dwindling of the purchasing power of Nigerians, all of which has further dragged many enterprises out of existence and Nigerians below the poverty lines,” Mr Oyerinde said.
He said President Bola Tinubu’s economic plans for improving the standard of living must be backed by quick responses.
Mr Oyerinde commended subsidy removal, renewed efforts to curb oil theft and ongoing attempt to reform the tax administration system.
The director general, however, said it was important that the government took more drastic steps to stop the slide into hopelessness by Nigerians and organised businesses.
“It is instructive to note that businesses and households are currently being overstretched beyond their shock buffers.
“Already, there is a drag on business operation as production plans are persistently displaced by frequently changing factor costs, and households are constantly adjusting consumption to accommodate their inadequate real income,“ he said.
Mr Oyerinde urged the government to urgently take deliberate actions to mitigate the persistent rise in inflation to address what he described as the fast-accelerating cost of living.
According to him, such actions may include price stability mechanisms, periodic feedback on the progress of the ongoing work at the refineries, reversal of the Value Added Tax on AGO, and suspension of the planned upward review of electricity tariff.
“More importantly, the government must conclude all palliative measures, which we expect should provide some immediate respite to both individual and corporate citizens,“ the NECA boss said.
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