THE Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele, has said that if border closure is sustained for the next two years, issues of insurgency, banditry and kidnapping will be totally eradicated.
Emefiele stated this at the first Convocation Lecture of Edo University, Iyamho, Auchi on Friday.
The governor, while responding to questions after his lecture titled “The Role of Monetary Policy towards Economic Growth in Nigeria,” said the border closure was capable of tackling all security challenges currently being experienced in the country.
He explained that if the youth who were in these vices were gainfully engaged in meaningful activities, insecurity would reduce to the barest minimum.
“I can tell you that if our borders remain closed for two years, the issue of ‘Boko Haram’, Kidnapping, Banditry and ‘Yahoo-Yahoo’ will stop.
“CBN will promote this policy by making sure that we produce what we consume and eat what we produce,” he said.
He vowed that the apex bank would not allow the country to be used as a dumping ground for smuggling goods.
Emefiele however, decried the actions of some neighbouring countries which he said was not helping matters.
The governor explained that instead of some neighbouring countries to develop policies to grow their own economies, they engaged in things that undermine the Nigerian economy.
He said when Nigeria as a country increased import duty on rice to discourage importation, those neighbouring countries reduced their own duties to get rice importation to be smuggled to the country.
“We no longer want what they are importing to our country because we can produce them and CBN will do everything possible to promote domestic products,” he said.
Emefiele challenged the young and old to go into agriculture because it was one of the major ways to grow the economy.
The convocation lecture was chaired by the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission (NUC), Prof. Abubakar Adamu Rasheed.
Other dignitaries at the event include former Edo State Governor and National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole; the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu; Commissioner for Education, Hon. Jimoh Ijegbai and the Special Adviser to the Edo State Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, among others.
According to Emefiele, “the favourable outcomes and strengthening outlook of the Nigerian economy is traceable to the adoption of unconventional monetary policy tools. The CBN has been able to reduce inflation, build our FOREX reserves and maintain FOREX market stability and foster real growth.
“Nonetheless, challenges still remain. The pace of population growth at about 2.6 per cent still outstrips real growth rate while inflation is outside our tolerance band.
“Unemployment rate and incidence of poverty remain at unacceptable levels.
“Our economy still faces headwinds from expected declines in global growth and its resulting impact on oil prices and capital flows to emerging market countries.
“These challenges require that we strengthen our efforts at enhancing growth in productive sectors of the economy, which will help in insulating our economy from external shocks.
He said he was delighted that much of the success recorded in the economy is due to the adoption of unconventional microeconomic policies, adding: “Within the CBN, our unconventional methods, especially in the management of the FOREX Market and our development financing supported by the orthodox approaches of monetary rate, have been able to optimally balance the delicate objectives of price stability and real output growth.”
Governor Obaseki said the CBN has been instrumental to the economic growth being recorded in the state, especially in the areas of the industrialization and agriculture.
The governor said a $200 million deal has been struck with a reputable, world renowned textile company to establish a cotton-weaving and spinning industry at the Benin Enterprise and Industrial Park, next year.
Obaseki said the initiative was in line with the CBN’s plans to revamp the textile industry in the country with a view to reducing importation of textile materials.
Noting that the state government was promoting investment and real growth in the agricultural sector so as to get people out of poverty, he said the CBN’s N5bn commercial agriculture credit scheme in the state has led to employment of about 5,000 people and cultivation of 5,000 hectares.
He, however, advised that the CBN’s monetary policies be followed up with investment in fiscal policies such as infrastructural development to ease movement of locally produced goods and services.
He commended the CBN for having a specialised window to support the entertainment and tourism industry, adding that Edo State is solidly behind the apex bank’s policies.
The Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Emmanuel Aluyor, said Edo University, Iyamho is an emerging world-class university equipped with world-class teaching, research and learning facilities, a conducive learning environment, and prides itself with a stable academic calendar.
“I congratulate the first set of graduates for blazing the trail to achieve their goals of successful completion of their university degree programmes in world class university, Edo University,” he said.
culled from: thenationonlineng