26 January 2018

Nigeria: 'Smuggling Still a Challenge to Local Manufacturers'

Although the Federal Government has stepped up its campaign for patronage of locally manufactured goods, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), has expressed concern over the increasing rate of smuggling, an activity believed to be threatening the competitiveness of the productive sector.

According to MAN, low purchasing power on the part of consumers has also made smuggled and sub-standard products acceptable, thereby inhibiting the growth and contribution of the real sector to national wealth.

Addressing journalists at a media luncheon in Lagos, yesterday, MAN President, Dr. Frank Jacobs, said the Association will sustain its advocacy against the influx of smuggled goods into the country, among other issues.

Speaking on the review of 41 items not valid for official foreign exchange (forex) allocation, Jacobs said some items earlier excluded were restored, adding "we are still exerting pressure on the relevant agencies to ensure that all raw materials that were erroneously included in the exclusion list are restored.

Jacobs explained that out of the 95 HS codes for materials, only 36 has been cleared out of the 41 items excluded from the list by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

MAN also kicked against the apex bank's decision to retain Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) at 14 per cent, saying the decision would only continue to increase interest rates in the country.

In his words: "Banks cannot continue to lend with interest rates on double digits. The industrial sector cannot thrive with such interest rates. We will continue to criticise the decision of the CBN to retain MPR at 14 per cent."

He however said statistics released by the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS), revealed that the nation's manufacturing sector in 2017 improved against performances in 2016, contributing nine per cent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

On fuel shortages, he argued that to end the perennial crisis in Nigeria, refineries must be handed over to the private sector, adding that government has no business doing business in the nation.

On Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), the MAN boss reiterated the Association's decision to sustain advocacy against the signing of the agreement, saying the agreement would only spell doom for Nigeria's manufacturing sector.

"MAN will continue to add to the advocacy issues it will pursue this year. We will ensure greater improvement in the business operating environment, including abolition of multiple taxation and its unorthodox mode of collection by the three tiers of Government. We will also push for the enactment of relevant manufacturing-friendly laws and abrogation of adverse and obsolete business related legislations," he added.

Nigeria

I'm Considering Running for President, Saraki Says

The number of aspirants seeking to get the ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is set to rise as Senate… Read more »

See What Everyone is Watching

Copyright © 2018 The Guardian. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 700 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.