Enugu chamber harps on economic diversification
*Hosts 350 local, foreign exhibitors at forthcoming fair
The Enugu Chamber of Commerce Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA) has backed the Federal Government’s economic diversification agenda, while canvassing fair deal in trade treaties with other economies.
According to the chamber, the present economic challenges provides great opportunity for local and foreign investors to have a meeting point to network and find common grounds to invest in the Nigerian economy, especially in the country’s manufacturing sector.
Speaking ahead of the 27th Enugu International Trade Fair during a courtesy visit to The Guardian headquarters in Lagos, President, ECCIMA, Ugochukwu Chime said Nigeria must not promote unfair competition in its international trade relations, while pursuing the diversification agenda.
“Previously in Nigeria, we have invested money in the areas that did not have direct impact investment. That is why it is now imperative to pursue businesses that would create immediate employment and the social economic growth of the local economy.
“Our view is that Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is very good but experience over the years has shown that FDI without local partnership with local investors would be a mirage because of security issues, infrastructure and irregular government policies.
The fair which is slated for Friday, March 25 through Monday April 4, 2016 at the International Trade Fair Complex, Golf Course, Enugu, would be declared opened by President Muhammadu Buhari to discuss major economic activities in the country.
With the theme:”Diversification of the Nation’s Economy: From Rhetorics to Coordinated action”, the 10-day fair would focus on the agricultural sector, towards boosting agricultural production and commercial farming, in a bid to diversify the economy.
Chime assured that this year’s fair has been strategically re-engineered to ensure that exhibitors and participants have rewarding experience.
According to him, over 350 firms would participate, including exhibitors from Ghana, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Japan, Canada, South Korea, Singapore, South Africa, among others to exchange ideas on ways to bring technological advancement to the country, especially at a time the country is experiencing high cost of importation based on the exchange rate of naira to dollars.
“The fair provides amendable platform for both public and private sector to deliberate deeply on the issue of diversification of the nation’s economy which has been a sing song over many decades which needs to be brought into fruition to manifest positively in the economic development of the country”, he said.
He disclosed that the chamber would consolidate efforts to improve the control on the activities of micro operators popularly known as hawkers who through their activities constitute nuisance to corporate exhibitors.