Union urges governement to ban importation of textile materials
The association argued that it was high time government repositioned the ailing industry for the development of the nation’s economy.
A communiqué issued at the end of its just-concluded 2018 industrial relation seminar held in Akure, Ondo State, stated that the industry is burdened by challenges of access to foreign exchange at affordable rate for the importation of machines and other equipment, smuggling, power challenges among others.
The National President of the union, Ambi Karu hinted that more than 200 textile firms have been shut as a result of systemic challenges, while some reduced their production, staff strength and remuneration of workers.
He argued there is nothing wrong for the government to give the local textile companies a 90% rebate on cost of generating power.
On the issue of inadequate power supply, the association urged government to give the textile plants zero percent Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) interest loan to build embedded power plants and pipelines to gas their factories.
The union called on government to put legislation in place to support local manufacturers, adding that there should be a deliberate government policy to ban importation of cheap textiles materials into the country.
It added that officials of the Nigeria Customs Service should effectively man the border posts to prevent smugglers ruin the industry.
According to them, ban on importation of foreign materials will protect the indigenous companies to be better and produce textile of international standard.
With the dominant role the manufacturing sector contributes to the growth of the economy, the union called on government to create an agency to protect the Nigeria’s textile industry.
The communiqué read in part: “When the industry was truly thriving without much challenges as it is today, Nigeria witnessed a boom in the textile sector.
At that time, specifically in the 1960s to 1970s textile companies such as Kaduna Textiles, Kano Textiles, United Nigeria Textiles, Aba Textiles, Texlon Nigeria Limited, First Spinners Limited, amongst others employed close to a million workers, contributing about 15 per cent of the manufacturing sector earnings to the GDP of the Nigerian economy.
“With the boom in the sector, it accounted for over 60 per cent of the textile industry capacity in West Africa.
So, if you look at it from this perspective, there is the urgent need for the government to establish an agency to protect the textile sector.”
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