Government advocates new strategy to revive textile industry
To avoid failure of its intervention exercise, the Federal Government has advocated a systemic approach in terms of policy framework and implementation, as well as review of business model and strategy in the textile industry.
Indeed, the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Hajiya Aisha Abubakar, while reaffirming government’s commitment to revive the cotton, textile and garments industry, stated that there is a need for stakeholder-collaboration across the value-chain in proffering sustainable solutions.
Speaking during a facility visit to Spintex Ltd., Lucky Fibre Ltd and Nichemtex Ltd, in Ikorodu, Lagos, Abubakar said government would embrace a systemic approach that would cut across all sectors of the economy to make the solution sustainable.
According to her, the ministry would formulate favourable policies and engage with the Nigerian Customs Service over indiscriminate dumping of foreign textiles and garments in the country.
“We want the sector to operate above average and government alone cannot do it, all stakeholders along the value chain have a role to play.
“The government’s responsibility is to provide the enabling environment for businesses to thrive in the country. To bring back the glory of the textile industry, the manufacturers need to uphold trust and integrity in their production.”
“We really want to bring back the glory of the textile industry. We want the sector to become above average. This is why we want all stakeholders to place the right information on the table so that we can move the sub-sector forward,” said Abubakar, while speaking with the management of Spintex Mills.
“Different ministries are sitting together to proffer a solution to the foreign exchange issues. I would like you to come up a lot of products so as to make use of your machines. If you see anyone in your industry who is not doing the right thing, bring it to our notice,” the minister urged.
She advised the manufacturers to improve on their designs by making them more appealing to the younger generation, addingthat it would help them to be competitive.
“Plans to diversify the economy is not an easy thing, manufacturers need to exercise more patience in the area of foreign exchange”, she added.
She commended the Bank of Industry (BoI) for assisting the textile industries with the necessary finance for their operations.
“The tour has shown that the companies are operating below capacity but the finance from BoI has helped to sustain them in business”, she said.
Chief Executive Officer, Nichemtex Ltd, Ping-Man Chun, urged the government to assist in combating smuggling and counterfeiting of products.
He said, “Ninety per cent of textile materials in the market were smuggled into the country. They also imitate the original version of our products.
“Government needs to protect intellectual property because we invest heavily in designs which are stolen through counterfeiting.“
Human Resources Manager, Lucky Fibre Ltd, Mrs Kemi Ajibade, urged the government to prioritise access to foreign exchange for textile manufacturers to source raw materials for their production.
She also urged the government to address electricity challenges in the country, which had affected their production output.
President, National Union of Textile Garment Workers of Nigeria (NUTGWN), Mrs Grace Adereti, urged the government to create an enabling environment for export of textile materials in the country.
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