The Nigerian Bar Association Section on Business Law (NBA-SBL) is now set to begin its 17th Annual International Business Law Conference. The Chair of the Conference Planning Committee (CPC) and Treasurer of the Section’s Council, Ayoyinka Olajide-Awosedo, disclosed this at a press conference in Lagos that, the memorable event would hold from Wednesday, July 5 to Friday, July 7, 2023 at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos State. Olajide-Awosedo said that the conference themed, “The Nigeria Business Landscape-Priorities of Law, Policy and Regulation”, was aimed at exploring recent developments in the Nigerian business law environment.
The CPC Chair stated further the conference would set agenda to revive the economy, as a new government at the centre settles down in office. “The conference will also focus on what regulations are pertinent to revive our economy in order to encourage investors to attract talents. As lawyers, there are plethora of laws that affect the economy and so we want to sit in the room with all the relevant stakeholders, industries regulators, policies makers and look at how to move our economy forward. Looking at the impact of technology, we will look on how Nigeria can peg herself with the developed countries. Outside of the sessions and networking opportunities, we have regulatory clinic and we will be sponsoring 25 young lawyers to attend the conference”.
Olajide-Awosedo informed that numerous and interesting activities had been set aside for the conference such as “lawyers got talent competition”, where the winner would get cash price. On his part, the Chairman of NBA-SBL, Dr. Adeoye Adefulu, said that the council had keen interest and made various landmark successes in developing the economy of the country. He revealed that experts from both public and private sectors, as well as business lawyers and other stakeholders in the business law environment would converge to discuss how the regulations of the economic sector would be revived. “We have a regular regulatory interventions that we shall be working with and we have also arranged internships programmes for lawyers with regulatory agencies as well”, he said.
The Chairman, Programme and Content Sub-Committee, Oludare Sembore, said that the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, would be the Special Guest of Honour and Chief Host, while other dignitaries across the globe operating in the economy sector would equally grace this historic event. “The NBA President, Yakubu Maikyau (SAN) and other senior members of the legal profession will also be in attendance. Other senior members of the bar, the bench and the chief economist from KPMG will be in attendance. We shall also be having international speakers such as Dr. Folashade Adeyemo, an Assistant Professor in the University of Liverpool and Dr. Timi Popoola, the Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Exchange Ltd, as part of the panelists” while the Keynote Speaker is the World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, Shubham Chaudhuri.
In addition, participants at this year’s conference would be opportune to visit exhibiting booths, product demos, and hold one-on-one chat with exhibitor representatives. Not only that, the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) Clinic would be on ground to attend to issues bothering peoples’ minds. The forum would certainly present a unique opportunity for registered delegates to receive personalised complaints resolution at the NBA-SBL Regulatory Clinic. The Whova web application would serve as the major official communication platform meant to facilitate easy development of agenda and planning of personal schedule, enhance connection with other attendees to set up virtual meet-ups, just as online attendance of the conference would be activated for those that cannot attend in person.
No doubt, this year’s conference is poised to be an improvement over previous the ones considering the high level of commitment of CPC members and responses received from the audience and sponsors, just as the 16th edition themed, “Recent Developments in the Business Law Environment”, was another rich experience that had diverse stakeholders coming together and collectively championed a healthy business climate for the nation. It is for this reason that the NBA-SBL would continue to be relevant in the scheme of things and promote national development serving as the converging point for decision-makers within governmental and non-governmental circles, policy formulators, regulators and industry practitioners with a view to finding solutions to the myriad of challenges limiting businesses in our country.
This assurance was further amplified during the section’s last Annual General Meeting (AGM), held in Lagos, where Dr. Adefulu rolled-out his blueprint in office and reiterated that the section had been known and recognised for its culture of excellence often showcased at its annual conferences and that, through advocacy efforts, the section had been able to improve the country’s business climate. The chairman further offered a ray of hope that the business and economic environments within which the nation operates had changed significantly since the founding of the NBA-SBL and that the section, known for its culture of excellence, would continue to broaden access to continuing legal education and empower business lawyers with necessary skills, among other functions.
Additionally, the NBA-SBL Chairman believes that there is always ample room for advancement by continually asking questions on members’ needs and playing a central role in shaping a new, economic and business agenda through the re-assessment and strengthening of advocacy and communication channels without leaving out the place of ‘The Three Factor Focus’, being the thrust of the new council in place, which would offer vistas of opportunities for business lawyers to air their views on critical questions on how to make the NBA-SBL work better without leaving out anyone, as business law practice continues to wax stronger in Nigeria while lawyers and non-lawyers come together to brainstorm on how to create, sustain, and consolidate virile and robust business environment for Nigeria.
Dr. Kupoluyi is a member of the Nigerian Bar Association Section on Business Law