The Namibian Investment Promotion and Development Board (NIPDB) wants an ombudsperson for investor grievance resolution. However, President Hage Geingob has warned the board not to create extra red tape. Chief executive officer (CEO) of the advisory board, Nangula Uaandja, who was mandated by Geingob to promote and facilitate local and foreign investments as well as new ventures to contribute to economic development and job creation, made the remarks yesterday while presenting their 24-month strategic plan to Geingob at State House.
The President said the plan was a good start, but warned them not to create more bureaucracy. “You were hired because you had skills. We didn’t have people in government who had skills in that area, now the board is going to look for experts from somewhere else. How do you justify that?”, he asked.
“The initiative is to implement an investor complaint database, and prepare a dispute resolution framework with the target to resolve grievances and challenges within 90 days of reporting the matter. Also to escalate high-level disputes to relevant Cabinet committees to help build a conducive environment for investors,” explained Uaandja.
The NIPDB started operating on 1 April, and Uaandja stated that they remain committed to promote and facilitate investments in Namibia and also help develop local SMEs to fight Namibia’s high inequality.
In the plan, she identified possible initiatives that will be implemented to ensure that the NIPDB meets its objectives to benefit the whole nation. “The strategy was developed after considering the environmental context and NIPDB’s mandate, purpose and reason for existing to unlock opportunities and enable a better quality of life for all Namibians,” said Uaandja.
As part of the overall goal, the NIPDB will seek to unlock investment flows (foreign direct investment, reinvestment and domestic investment, including capital equipment importation) of US$1 billion in the next 24 months.
The board will also develop a consolidated investment project pipeline, which will include a range of projects generated through the public sector, foreign investors and government, with potential public-private partnership investment opportunities, including large national projects. “Keeping in line with the lessons learned from other development boards, the NIPDB will identify, evaluate and commence the establishment of at least two new or adjacent sectors that Namibia can package as opportunities for investors,” continued Uaandja.
Caption: Plan… The Namibian Investment Promotion and Development Board with President Hage Geingob.