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Rising overlapping functions of regulatory agencies killing manufacturing—MAN

The Petroleum Product Sectoral Group (PPSG) of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has expressed worry on what it described as an increasing overlap of functions amongst regulatory agencies.

According to them, such development is among the highest cause of unease of doing business in Nigeria.

The group decried over-regulation of their activities in the sector, describing such regulations as imposing additional financial burden on them, as well as making the business environment unfriendly.

Giving their assessment of the industry regulatory activities during an interactive session with National Environmental Standards Regulatory and Enforcement Agency (NESREA) and National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), the manufacturers called on agencies to clearly define and harmonise their responsibilities to avoid undue roles overlaps.

Chairman of the Sectoral Group, Dr. Okey Akpa lamented that the Group had received increasing complaints from companies bordering on regulations, monitoring and compliance and expressed certainty that such manufacturers’-agencies was organized to interact with the environmental regulatory agencies to foster cordial relationship between members and the regulators.

Dr. Akpa further believed that the meeting will further deepen better understanding of agencies’ policies/functions, in order to explore areas of collaborations and partnerships to improve friendlier business environment for manufacturing concerns.

MAN averred that one of the best ways to limit the unbearable overburdening facing manufacturers is to ensure that businesses are not frustrated with the same regulatory requirements from different agencies.

A sub-group chairman of the Petroleum Product Sectoral Group, Adesoji Fagbemi said the issue of over-regulation became worrisome when industrial activities that ought to be regulated by the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) were also being regulated by other agencies and NAFDAC.

Fagbemi lamented that there were too many requirements as regards the issue engaging consultants only approved by agencies, thus leading to duplication of costs.

In their unanimous submission, they noted that numerous charges and fees imposed by the agencies such as environmental development charge; chemical storage permit; laboratory analysis and the other charges have compelled companies to use the associates of the agencies’ officials for the assessment and audit report at ridiculous prices.

Earlier in his remarks, the Director-General of NOSDRA, Peter Idabor, explained that the agency was established in 2006 as an institutional framework to co-ordinate the implementation of the National Oil Spill Contingency Plan (NOSCP) for Nigeria in accordance with the International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation (OPRC 90) to which Nigeria is a signatory.

He added that NOSDRA has been intensely occupied with ensuring compliance with environment legislation in the Nigerian Petroleum Sector, both in the downstream, midstream and upstream sector.

Also speaking, the Director General/CEO of NESREA, Dr Lawrence Chidi Anukam said the agency is abreast of the issues raised and will explore best ways to collaborate with other stakeholders to address the concerns raised by MAN.