Agency: CMC Connect Burson-Marsteller
An unfavourable Bill that had created problems for the client, Nigerdock, as well as other investors/enterprises operating in Nigeria's free trade zone was in the process of being passed by the National Assembly. The Bill was sponsored by an overzealous government agency, Oil and Gas Export Free Zone (OGEFZA), that sought to exercise overriding power to regulate the free zone which hitherto was not under its control.
- OGEFZA was constitutionally set up only to control a specific free trade zone, but by proposing the Bill for the amendment of the law that established it, the agency had attempted to empower itself and usurp the authority of the rightful agency Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) through the legal process.
- Investors/operators realized that if the Bill was passed, a sole private operator INTELS would be the beneficiary and such a monopoly would kill the businesses of other competitors.
- Passage of the Bill would result in duplication of regulatory authority (OGEFZA and NEPZA) exercising powers over the free trade zones in Nigeria. This trend was not in conformity with global best practice so it would discourage local and foreign investors.