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GSK’s exit shows Nigeria’s environment horrific for businesses, says Atiku

Atiku Abubakar Atiku Abubakar

Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar says the planned exit of GlaxoSmithKline Plc from Nigeria is an indication of the “horrific” environment for businesses in the country.

GSK is for products such as Augmentin, Neosporin, Panadol, Sensodyne, Advair, Ventolin, and Theraflu, among others.

In a statement on Thursday, GSK Nigeria announced that it plans to cease operations after evaluating the options for moving to a third-party distribution model for its pharmaceutical products.

Reacting via his Twitter page on Saturday, Atiku said Nigeria needs to do more to encourage investors to do business in the country.

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“The planned exit of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) from Nigeria after more than five decades of doing business in Nigeria underscores how horrific the environment has become for both local and foreign businesses,” Atiku said.

“Sadly, many international firms have, in recent times, sold their assets and bid farewell to Nigeria after several years of operating in our country. 

“These exits have led to further loss of jobs in an environment that is already bleeding jobs. 

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“We need to do a lot more not only to encourage investors to make Nigeria their preferred destination but also to encourage companies already operating in our land not to ‘japa’. 

“To this end, we must revamp our infrastructure, endeavour to enthrone a sustainable regime of energy security and retool our fiscal and monetary policy.”

Similarly, Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), described GSK’s planned exit as “disheartening”.

“I have consistently maintained that in turning our nation around, we must move the economy from consumption to production, part of which included encouraging and supporting local and foreign investments, like GSK, in the country,” he said.

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“The creation of an environment that creates and sustains multinationals to invest in our country is key to our dream of greatness. In the new Nigeria that we seek to create, the emphasis on production will encourage investors to stay and expand on our shores.

“Our people will keep their jobs and grow their prosperity.”

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