Manufacturers say insecurity crumbling Imo, Abia economies
…say economic activities at lowest ebb
The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) says the economies of Abia and Imo States are at risk of collapsing as a result of heightening insecurity.
The manufacturers decried the continued loss of customers’ patronage, saying it is heightened the government in both states addressed the situation.
Jude Eluma, chairman, MAN, Imo/Abia branch in an address at the 34th annual general meeting of the branch, held in Aba, potential foreign and local investors have been driven away potential, as hoodlums continue to exploit the atmosphere to perpetrate evil. The consequence, he said, is rising unemployment and social vices.
Eluma also lamented the forex crisis in the country, which has left most manufacturers, especially small and medium scale industries in limbo.
“Purchase of raw materials, spare parts for worn-out machines and production purposes have been greatly stifled by the non-availability of forex, thus leading to skeletal production on demands and in some cases, total company shutdown.
“While we appreciate the recent move by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to halt the supply of foreign exchange to bureau de change (BDC) operators, thereby eliminating excess middlemen and allowing the available of forex for production, using the official banking protocol, “we hope this would encourage local productivity and enhance the value of naira”.
He said that having a fixed exchange rate is the way forward so that members can borrow from banks and payback, rather than a fluctuating exchange rate, which is subject to manipulation and economic uncertainties.
On banks credits to manufacturers, he advocated that conscious efforts be made to prioritise credit facilities to manufacturers to position them for the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) programme which, according to him, has lots of potentials and opportunities, if local manufacturers operate in a similar climate with counterpart African countries.