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Nigeria’s 0.5% GDP For Research, Development Insufficient – NMDC DG



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The Director-General and Chief Executive Officer of the National Metallurgical Development Centre, Jos, Plateau State, Prof Linus Asuquo, has said that the country’s current 0.5% Gross Domestic Product on research and development is still very low and cannot sustain any meaningful progress.

He said for the country to achieve meaningful development, spending anything less than 2% of its GDP on research and development is not encouraging.

The DG stated this in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State while fielding questions from newsmen on Wednesday.

He said that the GDP on research and development, which was a meagre 0.1% was only raised to 0.5% by former President Muhammadu Buhari, adding that he is not sure whether the 0.5% is being implemented already.

He said, “The problem in this country is that we don’t spend money on research and development, and I am saying this everywhere. Some countries that are doing well spend 2-3% of their GDPs on research and development.

“Do you know that our GDP on research and development is 0.1% until recently the immediate past president, Muhammadu Buhari, raised it to 0.5%? I don’t know whether that has been implemented.
“For us to do anything meaningful, anything less than 2% is not encouraging and that should be the starting point.”

He urged Nigeria to spend money on research and development in all areas, adding that the COVID-19 pandemic has already opened the eyes of Nigerians that research and development is important and necessary.

Speaking on Ajaukuta Steel Mills, the DG said the project is realisable given the political will and determination of the All  Progressives Congress-led administration of President Bola Tinubu, but warned against international politics in the realisation of the project.

He added, “Ajaukuta is still possible if we have the political will. Over the years, I have been following Ajaukuta Steel Mills, there are a lot of ups and downs, and we must not rule out international politics, we should be careful with international politics, if you know the amount of Steel we import into the country, about N5bn steel every year and now you want to have your own, do you think the people you import from will be happy?

“We should realise that the West, no matter how they laugh with you, won’t want you to be at par with them and I believe those in government should realize that there is international politics to frustrate any efforts.”

He lauded Tinubu for creating the Ministry of Steel Development, adding that the efforts of the ministry will now be focused primarily on Ajaokuta Steel Mills.


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