By Jonathan Nda-Isaiah
The Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) and the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) have agreed to share data on import and export points for analysis and for decision making aimed at properly measuring the contribution of the Free Trade Zone Scheme to the national economy.
Prof. Adesoji Adesugba, NEPZA’s Managing Director and his counterpart, Dr Yemi Kale, Statistician-General/CEO of the National Bureau for Statistics (NBS) agreed to form this strategic partnership when the NEPZA boss visited the NBS Headquarters on Wednesday in Abuja.
Adesugba said the partnership was aimed at assisting the Authority at robustly defining both the import and export data points for analysis and for decision making through the free trade zone gateways.
According to a statement by the head, Corporate Communications, NEPZA, Martins Odey, the NEPZA managing director further explained that the synergy was also directed at sharing relevant data between the two agencies in order to regularly highlight the zone scheme’s contribution to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and employment generation.
He said the collaboration will be also aimed at assisting in providing training to NEPZA’s staff on high quality data gathering, presentation, analysis and interpretation, adding that the understanding between the two organizations would alsogive the Authority the leverage to navigate the NBS data platform without hinderance.
On his part, Kale said the bureau was set up to monitor indices of the productive sector, adding that any contemplated partnership toward that direction was welcomed.
Kale said NEPZA was a strategic agency of government established to use the zone scheme to drive industrialization, stating that: “it is imperative indeed to keep statistical track of the Authority’ contribution to the economy.
“I would like to particularly thank Prof. Adesoji Adesugba for bringing the desired change and innovation to NEPZA. Using statistical tools to gauge the Authority’s mandate remains the best form of Monitoring and Evaluation.
“We are, therefore, prepared to concretize this working relationship for the overall benefit of the country,’’ Kale said.
The high point of the meeting was the agreement for the setting up of Technical Committee consisting of members from both agencies with the sole aim of developing instruments that would assist NEPZA’s data production system.