Ernst & Young West Africa has urged African businesses to expand internationally to compete globally.
This was according to the Advisory Sector Leader, Government and Infrastructure, Ernst & Young West Africa, Joe Cosma, who spoke with our correspondent during the launch of the firm’s new office in Abuja.
Cosma said, “I would say we need to see more African businesses coming out of Africa, going international. That, to me, is the beginning of growth, and it is the beginning of maturing of our economies, rather than companies coming inside, but we still have quite a long way to go.
“There has been a drastic change in the economies of Africa. I think they are moving in the right direction. Sometimes a bit slowly, but they are all moving. They are all maturing, and they are starting to do the right things.”
He also reiterated the relevance of its auditing and consulting services to the Nigerian economy, stressing that its activities were helping to restore trust and confidence in business and government organisations.
“We do audit, and audit will provide that level of confidence to our clients, their shareholders and the other stakeholders. So, auditing will always be there, because it is needed by all those stakeholders. It is simple and straightforward,” he added.
On his assessment of the level of public and private partnership in Nigeria, he noted that it was maturing but admitted that the process had been slow.
Also, Senior Partner and Head of Markets of the firm, Ashish Bakhshi, noted that Nigeria remained a crucial market for Ernst & Young in West Africa.
“Our clients know that we are here to support them, and we do a lot of sessions with them in the office, like strategy sessions and training, so that we can make our clients grow and grow with them. That is our motto: make the clients grow and grow with them,” he said.
According to him, the company is committed to helping businesses in Nigeria and other African countries compete globally.
On his part, the Chief Operating Officer, West Africa, Ernst & Young, Busiayo Layade, noted that challenges faced by the companies operating on the continent were similar, explaining that issues that affected Ernst & Young’s clientele also indirectly affected the company.
“We work within Nigeria. So, the same challenges many other companies face in terms of fuel scarcity, the foreign exchange rate, costs going up, all those things affect our clients, and as they affect our clients, they affect us.”