Chris Steven, Abuja
Senator representing Abia South District, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe has commended the decision of the Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG) to shift attention to issue of promoting Made in Nigeria goods.
This was as he said patronage of local producers of goods and services is the best solution to the current economic recession in the country.
In a statement signed by him on Monday, Senator Abaribe who is chairman, Senate Committee on Power, Steel Development and Metallurgy noted that the involvement of a respected group of private sector operators like the NESG in the campaign which he and others started since 2013 will allow more Nigerians to appreciate the need to shift focus to goods produced locally..
“Long before now when I started promoting the Made in Aba Trade Fair here in Abuja to showcase the beautiful products from my constituents and create awareness among people in top positions and ordinary Nigerians that goods produced in this country are of good quality, I did not know there will be economic recession.
“Now, it is obvious that both as a way of saving the dwindling foreign exchange that the country earns and to also put our country in a position to promote exports, we need to turn to goods produced in Nigeria. That is the only way we can be self sufficient as a nation and get millions of our unemployed people to be gainfully engaged.
“There are very few foreign goods for which we do not have local alternatives that are of high quality. Our people are creative. There are a lot of potentials here. We just need to support each other. I advise NESG to deliberate on practical ways of providing financial, promotional and logistic supports for the local manufacturers.
“We in the Senate have moved a step further in promoting Made in Nigeria products when on June 16, 2016, we passed an amendment to the Public Procurement Act which now compels all Ministries, Departments and Agencies of Federal Government to patronize local goods and services in all their procurement. In fact, by the provision of the new law, it is only when there is no local alternative that MDAs can resort to foreign products.
“I look forward to a beneficial outcome of the NESG sessions and the positive impact it will have on our people in Aba, Kano, Ikorodu, Onitsha, Abeokuta, Kaduna, Jos, Ibadan and other cities”, the Senator stated.