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FG attracts $3.5bn to boost cotton, textile, apparel industry

FG inaugurates committee to strengthen Intellectual Property rights, drive industrialisation

By Favour Okpale

The Federal Government has so far attracted some $3.5 billion to develop a resurgence plan for optimised performance of the Nigerian cotton, textile and apparel industry in partnership with development partners and private sector players.

This is according to Doris Uzoka-Anite, minister of industry, trade and investment, who spoke in Abuja on Tuesday during the ministerial sectoral briefing to mark President Bola Tinubu one year in office.

Nigeria’s textile industry over the years has continued to struggle as the importation of textile products into the country surged over four years from N182.5 billion in 2020 to N377.1 billion in 2023, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

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This is despite several intervention programmes to boost the sector over the years including the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) ambitious plan for the sector which sought to provide about N50bn funding support, training initiatives, and foreign exchange restrictions on textile imports.

Uzoka-Anite acknowledged that the textile industry remains one of the top contributors to the manufacturing sector of the economy, with huge potential for employment creation, for both skilled and unskilled labour, extensive capacity for generating export earnings, attracting foreign direct investment, and reducing poverty.

“The ministry is developing a Resurgence Plan for Optimized Performance of the Nigerian Cotton, Textile and Apparel Industry in partnership with development partners and private sector players. We have attracted $3.5bn investment capital to unlock this sector,” she told journalists.

According to her, Nigeria’s textile and apparel industry covers the entire clothing value chain and has a strong potential for growth due to the availability of cotton and the country’s large market- size represented by over 200 million inhabitants.

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Anite also said steps were being taken by the ministry in collaboration with the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), the anchor institution for the National Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP) and regulatory body for the automotive industry in Nigeria. This will unlock the potential opportunities inherent in the nation’s automotive sector.