By Princewill Ekwujuru
Nigeria spent N19.5 trillion to import raw materials in seven year from year 2000 to 2016.
Director of Government Relations and Public Policy, sub-Saharan Africa Operations, Procter and Gamble (P&G), Mrs. Temitope Illuyemi disclosed this in Lagos quoting statistics from the Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC).
She disclosed this while speaking at a forum for suppliers in the manufacturing sector organized by the company in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN).
She said: “A huge percentage of industrial raw materials for manufacturing of products are still being imported into the country. Statistics from the Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC) shows that in 2016, the country spent N5.89 trillion on the importation of raw materials; thus, bringing the total sum spent on the importation of primary raw materials into the country in seven years to N19.5 trillion. On the average, the country spent N2.79 trillion every year within this period.
Speaking on the objectives of the meetings she said; “Backward integration is essential to the growth of the Nigerian economy and P&G’s aim is to encourage our global partners to do the same and thereby promote technology transfer. We will work to pre-qualify local suppliers for materials used in the production of consumer packaged products and by extension, build capability of local manufacturers to compete effectively in regional value chains and further strengthen the diversification efforts of the Nigerian government.”
“For the manufacturing sector to experience potential growth going forward, it needs to focus its efforts on local production and company’s like Procter and Gamble are taking deliberate steps to support the Federal Governments economic development agenda. P&G currently manufactures its products close to consumers and this has aided technology transfer.”
“The Nigerian economy has tremendously benefited from the organization’s drive to be a Nigerian company of international standard as the organization has continually contributed positively to the society by using its expertise and products to solve social, environmental and economic problems.
“The company’s continuous local investment is a testament to its commitment to support the Federal Government’s diversification efforts. It is imperative for all sectors to intensify efforts towards enabling local entrepreneurship development and helping with the capabilities required to produce raw materials locally. This will go a long way in actualizing the country’s economic development agenda.”
Illuyemi further stated that the company is committed to the Nigerian economy and has invested over $500million in the country till date. These funds have been deployed into the construction of her two manufacturing plants, localization of manpower, and the growth of Micro Small Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) which is incorporated into the supply chain of the organization.