12 April 2016, Lagos – The sector that contributes 57.9 per cent of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product, GDP, is at risk of closure, as the unending fuel crisis witnessed across the country has started to take its toll on small businesses in Abuja and other parts of the country, since majority of the businesses were now struggling to remain open.
Specifically, most of them, mainly informal businesses, which the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS, said accounted for 57.9 per cent of Nigeria’s rebased GDP, had to shut down their businesses over non-availability of power supply and scarcity of petroleum to power their generators.
Power supply to households also dropped to as low as four hours per day, while fuel has risen to N350 per litre from the black marketers, the only source of the product.
Some of the business owners worst hit by the crisis are barbers, hair-dressers, tailors, fashion designers, business centre operators, technicians and taxi drivers, among others.
Most of the small businesses in Kubwa were shut weekend, as some operators said they could not get fuel to power their generators, while in cases where they were lucky to get the product, it costs as high as N300 per litre.
They said as a result of the power and fuel crises, their cost of business had skyrocketed, thereby making their businesses unprofitable.
Also, the hardship faced by Nigerians heightened as the queues continued to grow longer at filling stations in major cities across the country, while a few others selling the product hiked the price above the official pump price.