The American Business Council (ABC) has disclosed that Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) of about 1.3 billion dollars flowed into the Nigerian economy from the US in 2017.
Speaking during the Launch of the 2018 US Economic Impact Survey on Wednesday in Lagos, Darrel McGraw, Vice President of ABC, said the survey carried out in collaboration with Accenture, KPMG, PwC and the US Embassy, assessed the overall economic impact of US companies in Nigeria.
He said the survey reflected the contribution of 74 US companies operating in Nigeria and their responses reinforced the role the US played in the economic wellbeing of Nigeria.
McGraw said the roles were in the areas of job creation, investments in training and development, tax contribution, and corporate social responsibility.
According to him, the surveyed companies generated a revenue of over N2.6 trillion in 2017, from N1 trillion in 2016.
He said they contributed N111 billion in tax to both the Federal and State Governments, created approximately 11,200 indirect jobs and over 9000 full time jobs in the year under review.
The reports that the surveyed companies spent over N1.6 billion on training and development in 2017 from N340 million in 2016.
“This shows US companies’ commitment in capacity building in order to correct the deficit in labour skills.
“N1.5 billion was spent by the companies on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), from N217 million spent in 2016.
“The focus areas are Education, Health, Infrastructure and Social intervention, which are key area of focus for US companies in Nigeria,” he said.
McGraw disclosed that about 52 per cent of these companies identified Nigeria as a regional hub for their operations in West Africa.
He said findings showed that 64 per cent of US companies had a local content target reflecting an inclination towards localisation in areas such as products, people and supply chain.
According to him, critical issues that impact the business operations of surveyed US companies in Nigeria includes labour, specific industry regulations, local content and crime and security.
“Security of lives as well as Intellectual Property has been a crucial issue for US companies as this impacts investment and derails trust,” he said.
McGraw added that, though Nigeria had improved its performance on the Ease of doing business, businesses continued to face dire challenges in the country.
“In spite of the challenges, this survey shows renewed focus of US companies operating in Nigeria committing in human capacity as well as financial investment.
“This is a clear indication that US businesses are committed to contributing to the Nigerian economy by uplifting its people, increasing investment in Nigeria and facilitating trade,” he said.
On his part, Mr Lazarus Angbazo, President of ABC, said US was a natural business partner of Nigeria and one with a long-standing commitment to the country.
He noted that some American firms had been in existence, partnered and invested in Nigeria since Independence, and there were over 100 US companies operating in Nigeria.
According to him, ABC is an integral stakeholder in the Commercial Investment Dialogue which is intended to deepen trade investment ties between the U.S. and Nigeria.
It is also designed to foster sustained engagement between governments on concrete issues of importance to the private sector.
ABC is an affiliate of the US Chamber of Commerce and was incorporated in 2007 to promote the development of commerce and investments between the US and Nigeria.
The council is a voice for all US companies operating in Nigeria and the first point of call for American investors to Nigeria.