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Obi laments as Nestle, MTN record loss



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Peter Obi, the candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in the 2023 presidential election, has lamented over the continuous loss of profit by business organizations in the country. 

Obi called for a more favorable business environment to enable local and international businesses to thrive.

Obi, who made the call while reacting to the financial losses of Nestle Nigeria and telecom giant MTN, noted that these losses are the “result of our worsening business environment.”

In a statement on Saturday, the former governor of Anambra State lamented that the continuous fluctuation of the value of the naira in the Nigerian foreign exchange market is taking a toll on business.

Obi called for an end to “this ugly trend, which is seriously discouraging production in our nation.”

His statement reads, “Yesterday, we were confronted with the worrisome audited report of the multinational firm Nestle Nigeria, which occupied much of the business media space.

“This morning, again, the media is awash with the unpalatable financial report from another multi-national company, MTN Nigeria Plc, showing a similar huge loss of profit before tax of N177.8 billion, which resulted in a wipeout of shareholders’ funds.

“The loss was attributed to operational changes to the Nigerian foreign exchange market, including the abolishment of the parallel structure announced by CBN in June 2023.

“These business losses, and in some cases, closures, and exits of local and foreign businesses, are a result of our worsening business environment.

“Following the losses reported by these major multinationals, one can imagine what the small businesses are going through, especially now that they are facing a double whammy from increased costs occasioned by poor fiscal policies and high interest rates occasioned by recent monetary policies.

“As a trader, I feel and experience it daily. Most of these losses by smaller businesses may not catch the attention of major media outlets.

“Many of the affected businesses may have closed down, leading to additional job losses, and many more may follow suit if this harsh business environment is not reversed.

“We must urgently reverse this ugly trend, which is seriously discouraging production in our nation and has continued to hinder our movement from consumption to production.

“A New Nigeria is only possible if we can sustain a friendly business environment to keep big and small, as well as local and international businesses, thriving in our national economy.”