A former president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), Otunba Abdul Lateef Owoyemi, has called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to devise strategies to reduce interest rate in the country, adding that the cost of accessing facilities in the country was too high. Speaking on second term given to Mr Godwin Emefiele as CBN governor, the accountancy guru said that the interest rate in the country is too high to allow people to engage in productive activities.
Speaking in an interview with at the weekend, Owoyemi, who is also the chief executive officer of LOP Consultants, said that only those who want to engage in short-term and speculative business can afford to take facilities at the prevailing rate in the country. According to him, “In countries where productivity is taken seriously, the interest rate is one or two percent and this allows small business owners and others who want to engage in productive ventures to do so. In Nigeria, the interest rate is so high that only a few productive activities can take place. What do we want to do with the money? We should be interested in what money can do for the economy in the interest of Nigerians,” he said. Owoyemi argued that if the interest rate were brought down, manufacturers and others would be able to borrow money for productive ventures, adding that the country would be a better place for it.