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HomeEconomyObaseki: Survival of Nation’s Economy Depended on Manufacturers’ Association

Obaseki: Survival of Nation’s Economy Depended on Manufacturers’ Association

Joel Osaigbovo Aluge, Reporting

Benin City, Edo State

The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has said the country can no longer continue to depend on imported goods and services but must take deliberate and decisive steps to support domestic production and export of goods and services so as to boost foreign earnings.

Obaseki said this when he received the National President of the Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria (MAN), Otunba Francis Meshioye with other executives, who were on a courtesy visit at the Government House, Benin City.

The governor, who said the survival of the nation’s economy depended on the manufacturers’ association, said Edo State is leveraging its unique advantage with the availability of raw materials to production and manufacturing and drive economic development.

He noted, “Nigeria in the last 40 years has continued to rely on imported goods and services that they don’t produce. We have gotten to a point where we must consume what we manufacture in this nation because we don’t have foreign exchange. We don’t export any manufactured goods as a nation and MAN has a role to help by redirecting the country towards manufacturing.”

Obaseki further stated, “We have to create the enabling environment for the association to thrive and move away from the notion that it’s not our responsibility to create wealthy people, and government should not be in competition with the private sector, or people providing services for us as it affects the policy thinking of government where the government sees these people as criminals but those who pad budget as nationalist.

On efforts to boost production activities in the State, Obaseki said, “We have come out with strong environmental policies to re-grow the forest and wood industry, ensuring that forest guards are re-introduced to police the forest and stop illegal logging, and have created encouraging policies for people who want to go into timber plantation.”

Noting that Edo State has the largest oil palm development programme in Africa, the governor noted that, “The State through the ESOPP Programme gave seven investors 70,000 hectares of land to grow oil palm.”

According to him, “In Edo State, we long saw this coming and we took bold steps and one of the fundamental steps taken is re-structuring our educational system, particularly the foundational education, ensuring we produce a generation of citizens that are well taught. We see ourselves in the next few decades producing the best quality manpower in Nigeria.”

Earlier, the National President of the Manufacturing Association of Nigeria commended the governor’s strides in Edo’s economy, making the State a leading destination for private sector Investments.

“With Midwest as a hub for industrial activities, it’s imperative for collaboration with the government to revive the manufacturing Industry in Edo State through policies and programmes to fast track industrial growth. We are glad with the progress in driving the influx of investments in Edo through the annual Alaghodaro which has birthed the Duport Refinery, Green Hill Ethanol Plant, Ossiomo Power, and Edo Production hub, among others where the private sector partners with the government in manufacturing.”

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