The cream of the Nigerian business and commercial law community were joined by professionals from other walks of life and business people, academics and the media at the Opening Ceremony and Welcome Dinner on Wednesday, July 5, 2023 to mark the commencement of the 17th International Business Law Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association’s Section on Business Law (NBA-SBL). The venue was the Eko Hotels & Suites on Victoria Island, Lagos.

Welcoming guests to the event, the Chairman of the SBL, Dr. Adeoye Adefulu and the President of the NBA, Yakubu Maikyau, SAN, described policy – as referenced in the Conference theme, ‘The Nigerian Business Landscape: Priorities for Law, Policy & Regulation’-  as a potent tool ultimately geared towards the promotion of peace, growth and the empowerment for the people – and especially helps the progression of young lawyers as they navigate a profession increasingly marked by changing paradigms and potentially disruptive new technologies. Maikyau, in particular, called for a slew of long-overdue amendments in our laws that make for less complex regulation.

NEWSWIRE Law & Events Magazine correspondent in Lagos reports that the Keynote Speaker of the evening, Shubam Chowdury, is the Nigeria Country Director of the World Bank. The thrust of his presentation was built around the role of the global institution in helping countries around the world build inclusive and sustainable growth for ALL (not just a lucky few) of their citizens. He was emphatic in saying that this ‘virtuous trajectory’ of growth is impossible without 3 to-dos for both governments and the private sector: rule of law; investment in human capacity; and unlocking private investment to enhance job creation. Having previously served in this capacity in locations like Afghanistan, China and Indonesia, Chowdury couldn’t help but make the comparison between those economies and Nigeria – and why Indonesia, in particular, which shares the same demographic, geo-political and other features as Nigeria, has leapfrogged the latter in almost every economic and human development indicator. He concluded by proferring ways of converting the country’s enormous potential and the ‘pockets of excellence’  that Nigeria has so forcefully projected in the Diaspora, into national economic growth.

The rest of the evening after Mr. Chowdury’s insightful Keynote was given over to music, fine dining and wining, and networking, as conferees looked forward to the intellectual engagements of the next day, Thurday, July 6, when the Conference commences with panel sessions.

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