The Director-General, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Mr. Segun Ajayi-Kadir, has urged the Federal Government to intensify efforts so that the country’s economy will not relapse into recession.
He warned that if the country did not sustain the growth in productivity that had helped the economy exited recession, there could be a relapse.
Ajayi-Kadir spoke in an interview with journalists in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital on Friday on the sidelines of the third Annual General Meeting of MAN, Kwara/Kogi states branch. The AGM had as its theme, ‘Survival of industries in Nigeria: The roles of the government’.
The DG said, “It is important that government must continue to reflate the economy and to incentivise productivity so that we will be able to stay permanently out of recession. For us, it is cheering news that Nigeria is out of recession. It increases confidence in the economy.
“If you have assurance that economy is growing, you have influx of investors and you have all the prospects for productivity and for profit.”
The President, MAN, Dr. Frank Jacobs, commended the Federal Government for policies aimed at boosting manufacturing in the country, noting that the lifting of the ban on the Export Expansion Grant with very important modifications such as the expanded use of the Negotiable Export Credit Certificate, the transferability of the NECC and the intention to clear the outstanding debts with the use of Promissory Notes were helpful to manufacturers.
The branch Chairman, MAN, Kwara/Kogi chapter, Alhaji Kamorudeen Yusuf, requested that members of the association be appointed into boards of parastatals by the Kwara and Kogi State governments.
He said it was worrisome that several key state policies and general failing of government had over the years threatened the survival of industries, and by implication, impeded the realisation of national industrial development.
The guest speaker, Dr. Aderemi Medupin, identified the challenges of industrialisation in the country to include weak infrastructure, dumping of goods by foreign manufacturers, weak private sector, negative effects of globalisation, corruption and inadequate government support.
He said, “Given the country’s poor infrastructure and unfriendly business environment, the government’s current attempt at promoting industrial parks should be sustained and accelerated.
“There is the need to forge an organic link between the Nigeria industrial sector and the rest of the economy.”
The Kwara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, represented by the Commissioner for Commerce and Cooperatives, Alhaji Mohammed Rifun, stated that double taxation, absence of infrastructural facilities and high cost associated with financing projects made it difficult for local manufacturers to compete favourably with their foreign counterparts.