50% of pro­duc­tion firms closed down in 5 years — MAN

Daily Trust - - BUSINESS -

The Man­u­fac­tur­ers As­so­ci­a­tion of Nigeria (MAN) said that not less than 75 man­u­fac­tur­ing firms from about 150 in its mem­ber­ship list in the South East have shut­down in the last five years.

Chief Azubuike Okafor, chair­man of MAN in-charge of Anam­bra, Ebonyi and Enugu, said this at the first Anam­bra Govern­men­tDevel­op­ment Part­ners sum­mit in Awka on Tues­day.

Okafor at­trib­uted the shut­downs to harsh op­er­a­tional en­vi­ron­ment faced by mem­bers in the zone.

He said poor in­fras­truc­ture, in­clud­ing bad ac­cess roads, was neg­a­tively af­fect­ing cost of pro­duc­tion that the firms were no longer sus­tain­able.

“About fiver years ago, we had about 150 man­u­fac­tur­ing firms in our mem­ber­ship list in the zone and now about 75 of them have closed down; that rep­re­sents about 50 per cent of mem­bers.

“We do not have the en­abling in­fras­truc­ture, power and roads to op­er­ate; the cost of mov­ing ma­te­ri­als from Lagos to Anam­bra is al­most the same as the cost of im­port­ing the ma­te­rial from China into Nigeria.

“Though we have a business friendly gov­er­nor in Anam­bra, there is need to help the pri­vate sec­tor to grow,” he said.

Mrs Ade­joke Ade­fulire, Se­nior Special Ad­viser to the Pres­i­dent on Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Goals (SDGs), said there were in­fras­truc­ture gaps in the coun­try.

Ade­fulire said the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment was work­ing hard to en­sure that gaps were bridged to evolve a friendly and sus­tain­able business en­vi­ron­ment.

Prof. Solo Chuk­wu­lo­belu, Sec­re­tary to Anam­bra Gov­ern­ment, urged the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment to re­vi­talise and ac­ti­vate the mori­bund power project in the state.

Chuk­wu­lo­belu said if made func­tional, the power in­fras­truc­ture needs of the in­dus­trial cities in Anam­bra would have been greatly ad­dressed.

On his part, Mr Mark Okoye, Anam­bra Com­mis­sioner for Eco­nomic Plan­ning and Bud­get, said the state gov­ern­ment was work­ing to­wards in­cor­po­rat­ing the min­istries and agen­cies in the state to en­sure that the SDGs were achieved.

He said the state was con­duct­ing a base­line study and gen­er­at­ing com­mu­nity char­ter to en­sure that bud­get was tai­lored along the pri­or­i­ties and di­rect de­mands of the ben­e­fi­cia­ries.

Okoye said the bud­get de­fence process would be ex­panded to ac­com­mo­date the youth, women, or­gan­ised pri­vate sec­tor and the civil so­ci­ety, to en­sure greater par­tic­i­pa­tion and bet­ter im­ple­men­ta­tion. (NAN)

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