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FOBTOB decries impact of FX, parlous infrastructure on firms’ OPEX

By Gloria Nwafor
17 August 2023   |   3:02 am
The Food, Beverage and Tobacco Senior Staff Association (FOBTOB) has lamented how foreign exchange (FX), inadequate infrastructure as well as the increase in the cost of gas to power their operations are taking a toll on the cost of production in their sector. Speaking on the state of the economy and how it has negatively…

Food stuff. PHOTO: Ajuluchukwu Brown

The Food, Beverage and Tobacco Senior Staff Association (FOBTOB) has lamented how foreign exchange (FX), inadequate infrastructure as well as the increase in the cost of gas to power their operations are taking a toll on the cost of production in their sector.

Speaking on the state of the economy and how it has negatively impacted the industry, yesterday, during the celebration of its 45th-anniversary celebration, the National President of FOBTOB, Jimoh Oyibo, expressed disappointment with the current administration, stating that Nigerians are not getting the desired good governance as expected.

Stating that the industry was not immune from what is happening in the economy, he said the fact that the Naira was allowed to float alongside the subsidy removal was a double jeopardy for the citizens.

He said FOBTOB supports the call of the labour centres to shut down the country if any further increase in the price of petroleum products is implemented.

Oyibo, who mentioned that President Bola Tinubu did not realise the domino effect of his statement when he declared that ‘subsidy is gone’ in his inaugural speech, said he expected that as a responsible government that cared for the people to understand that some things needed to be put in place first before the sudden removal.

However, he said it is not too late for the government to admit it has no clue about what to do but to call on patriotic experts to proffer solutions.

“That is why we are not impressed by the Ministerial list sent to the Senate for confirmation. We see it as a payback list and a recycling of the same individuals who brought us to this sorry situation,” he said.

He added that ‘FOBTOB in the Last 45 Years’ as the theme of the anniversary, was meant to provide the atmosphere for “us to go down memory lane to remind ourselves of the trade union culture peculiar to FOBTOB. Our vision is to secure better living for the members and we strive to do this by using the power of numbers for effective collective bargaining.”

Chairman of the occasion and Managing Director of Intercontinental Distillers Limited, Patrick Anegbe, shared how the employers’ group, Association of Food, Beverage and Tobacco Employers (AFBTE) and the union had collaboratively navigated through turbulent times, changing market dynamics and economic uncertainties.

He said through open dialogue and constructive negotiations, they have successfully addressed issues and arrived at mutually beneficial solutions.

He also acknowledged the positive impact FOBTOB had made in intervening in the course of the astronomical increase of excise duties, fuel subsidy removal and encouraging backward integration in the sector, among others.

Anegbe, who was also the immediate past President of AFBTE, added that FOBTOB has played an integral role in shaping the landscape of the industry.

According to him, we have witnessed the association tirelessly advocating for the rights of its members, fostering an environment of collaboration and promoting fairness and equality within the sector.

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