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New ARCON law bans use of foreign models on Nigerian advertising media

Is traditional advertising truly dead in Nigeria? No, of course not!

The new Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria, ARCON law has banned the use of foreign models and voice-over artists in any advertisement targeted or exposed in the Nigerian advertising space with effect from October 1, 20222.

This is in line with the Federal Government’s policy of developing local talent, inclusive economic growth and the need to take necessary steps and actions aimed at growing the Nigerian advertising industry.

“From October 1, all advertisements, advertising and marketing communication materials are to make use of only Nigerian models and voice-over artists”.

Presenting the new ARCON law to the media recently, the Director General of ARCON, Olalekan Fadolapo said ongoing advertisements and campaigns are permitted to run out of their terms, however, subsequent applications for revalidation for continued exposure of such materials will not be granted by the Advertising Standards Panel of ARCON.

The law states that the council is to ensure the preservation of Nigerian local content and the use of indigenous skills as an important element in advertising, advertisement and marketing communication services in Nigeria and directed at the Nigerian market

He also said that under the new law, organisations giving awards to corporates or individuals should write to ARCON to establish basis and process of arriving at the awards.

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Also under the law, any organisation using unlicensed agency for its advertising purposes will be prosecuted

The new law which was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari recently creates and provides a regulatory framework for the Nigerian advertising and marketing communication industry and all matters related to it.

It establishes and creates effective, impartial and independent regulatory authority. It is also to strengthen the advertising industry in Nigeria.

The council shall consist a chairman, Director General, one representative from ministry, and one representative each from sectoral groups such as NUC, NBTE, BON, NPAN, OAAN, ADVAN and MIPAN, EXMAN. Five representatives from Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria , AAAN and head of legal unit of the council.

The new law also establishes Advertising Offences Tribunal which shall adjudicate over offences created under this law or code of advertising practice.

Fadolapo said the Tribunal is equal to High Court and any appeal against the judgement of the tribunal will be directed to Appeal Court.

On capacity to execute the functions of the new law, Fadolapo said the council has established 17 new offices bringing to a total of 32 offices nationwide. “We have positioned for the job ahead”, he said.

He said the new law was established to accommodate the new trends in advertising as there have been new trends and practices since 1988 when the former APCON act was promulgated.