In order to attract the required investment across the entire value chain in the country, a manufacturer, Mr Muideen Ibrahim, says the incoming Minister of Industry,Trade and Investment needs to ensure policies that will ensure that all sectors perform creditably well.
Ibrahim who the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of BAMIB Resources & Investments Company Limited disclosed
in Lagos on Monday.
He suggested that E-governance and E-commerce should be introduced at the ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and in all its agencies.
He said the minister should be up and doing with respect to the power distribution because the imperative of power supply for manufacturers cannot be over emphasized
Ibrahim, a pencil manufacturer said there were benefits the country could enjoy if the incoming minister could live up to expectations.
He said such benefits include national self -reliance, creation of massive jobs, a nigerian technology that is proudly Nigerian, better suited for the country’s protection and needs as well as the people.
Ibrahim identified others as Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), strengthening of local manufacturer(s), development of various components, skills acquisition in all ramifications, and creation of wholesome industrial development.
According to him, the challenges before the incoming Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment are numerous but are surmountable once the will power is there.
He identified some of those challenges as erratic power supply, ill treatment of Small and Medium Enterprises(SMEs), no clear cut policy for each sectoral group, non implementation of the Executive Order 3 and 5, as well as double taxation.
Others, he added were bottle neck at the Sea Ports, high cost of borrowing, nonchalant attitude of some government ministries and agencies as well as insecurity amongst others.
Ibrahim, who is also the Execultive Secretary of Electricity Meters Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (EMMAN).
He, however, said there was a remarkable improvement in the power sector, most especially with generation but stressing the need to improve the power distributions.
The manufacturer also said the incoming minister would have to urgently attend to some grey areas which were most needed especially in the second term of President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said, “Hence, the incoming Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment must be up and doing with respect to the power distribution because the imperative of power supply for manufacturers can not be over emphasized.
“The distribution companies should tidy up their various networks and evacuate what is generated constantly. It is sad and disheartening that one of the greatest challenges confronting the power sector is distribution.
“Generation is quite okay to a large extent but it can be better. What is generated in relation to our population is far too low. This presupposes that that there is need to scale up.
“However, the golden question is that if the Gencos scale up, can it be effectively transmitted or distributed? The answer is No,”.
According to him, South Africa is generating far more than what is generated in Nigeria whereas the population of South Africa is quite lower than that of Nigeria.
He, therefore, noted that the challenge remained that of human factor.
Ibrahim said most big manufacturing plants and companies were not willing to come to Nigeria because of the low level of power generated and transmitted and the few ones in Nigeria were producing at high cost due erretic to power supply.
“A lot of manufacturers rely on generating sets to power their production processes, hence the goods produced in Nigeria are far more higher than the imported goods and this is affecting a lot of manufacturers.
“Hence, companies fold up in droves in this country so the incoming minister and the president should address this matter once and for all.
“The three Gencos, TCN and Discos must work together in a harmoniously manner, ever than before, so that the country can achieve the desired results, most especially with respect to constant power supply.
“The incoming minister could do more for SMEs since they propel the economy of any nation and focus on them would eventually move the country forward in all ramifications,” Ibrahim said.
These, he added, include job creations, employment opportunities, creative tendencies and contributions to the gross domestic products amongst others.
The manfacturer noted that areas that should be addressed with respect to SMEs were funding, provisions of infrastructural facilities such as good roads, mentoring, funds and funding.