Misdiagnosing the trade problem
Nonso Obikili

Neither import or export is a problem or solution.

What Nigeria needs most is economic freedom, markets that are as deregulated as possible and ethnic autonomy as a basis of the Constitution. Then imports & exports as well as consumers and producers will find their useful economic levels and act accordingly to sustain themselves.

Why does it matter if Nigeria imports 100% of its fuel or food? Let the naira float (or even dollarize the economy), privatize and deregulate the petroleum sector and the entire economy and EVERYONE will simply have to adapt by buying what amounts of fuel and food they can afford.

And given that imported fuel will become expensive in such a deregulated environment, the building and operation of profitable local refineries will be incentivized. What applies to fuel will apply to EVERY OTHER sector of the economy, from education to apparel to music to anything else.

When importation gets too expensive to do, then it’s either produce or die. Government should stop infantilizing the Nigerian people. Let them be free, buy and sell what they want and engage in whatever enterprise they want. That’s the real solution, all these “problems” endlessly bruited in Nigerian fora are just symptoms.

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