‘Importation of sub-standard Asian steel threatening local manufacturers’ survival’
The increasing menace of dumping of sub-standard goods from Asian countries, into the Nigerian market is seriously undermining the competitiveness of the nation’s already distressed manufacturing sector, local operators have lamented.
Steel distributors who are currently affected by the situation stated that the importation of fake Chinese steel products poses threat to the country’s local market.
Speaking at Aarti Steel Customers’ forum in Lagos, on Wednesday, the firm’s distributors persuaded the company to reduce local prices and possibly qaulity to avoid being pushed out of the market by the Chinese.
While reacting to stakeholders’ request, the Executive Director, Aarti Steel Nigeria Limited, Keshav Sharan Sharma said the company is adhering to manufacturing standard of the government of Nigeria and its own standard, adding that if there is no standard, the economy will be affected.
Sharma said it is a tragedy to report that every genuine product being circulated in Nigeria is being imitated by counterfeiters who are producing something similar with no regard for standards and specifications.
“These fake steel products don’t have standards; you don’t know if it is going to spoil in one, two or three months.
The problem with Nigerians is they don’t value quality; they don’t have any specific standard.
This company was born to follow the standard of Nigeria; if I produce the Chinese quality, my company will be closed.
So do you want made in Nigeria products or Chinese?” he asked.
As there have been reported cases of collapsed buildings which was linked to the usage of sub-standard materials by builders, one of the company’s managers, Mukesh Augush stressed on the importance of quality, saying that though consumer buying power is low, there is a need to patronise quality products.
Stakeholders however commended the government for their support in ensuring adherence to standards, while hoping that the support is sustained.