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‘Nation’s business environment unfriendly for manufacturers’

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Aderemi Awode

The Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Chemstar Groups Limited, manufacturer of Finecoat and Shield Paints products, Aderemi Awode, has bemoaned what he described as challenging business environment in the country, especially as it affects paints industry.

This was as he noted that the last three or four years had been challenging in doing business in the country due to the unhealthy business environment for which paints manufacturers operate.

Awode, however, attributed this to low disposable income in the economy, the poor road infrastructure across the country and harsh business environment, which according to him, made doing business for manufacturing sector more difficult.

“The business environment is harsh but we are putting in our best, and we hope that by the coming years, the nation’s business environment will be better,” he added.

Awode, who disclosed this during the 2018 GMD/CEO Annual Merit Award (GAMAD 2018), in Lagos, appealed to the Federal Government to pay critical attention to the road infrastructure with a view to fixing the deplorable roads and reducing the hardship of moving products from one part of the country to the other.

“The last few years have been most challenging, especially for paints industry and that is why we are profoundly appealing to the Federal Government to fix the roads,” he said.

Awode further added: “Paints are bulky products and we have over 400 distributors across the country. More than 50 per cent of them are located mostly across the Northern part of the country, where we have to move our products. The roads are really bad and our drivers most often spend over two or three weeks on the roads. This is quite challenging.

“Besides, there is the problem of insecurity. These are the areas in which we are appealing and pleading with the government to look into dispassionately because if the nation’s road infrastructure is fixed and or improve upon, and security of lives and goods are ensured, these will go a long way in improving business environment in the country.”

He hinted that GAMAD is being held yearly as a platform to appreciate and celebrate members of staff, who had worked hard in the business year, saying: “We set aside a day like this to celebrate ourselves and give thanks to God, as well as ask for God’s mercy and protection in the next business year.
Despite the economic challenges facing paints industry, Awode expressed satisfaction that the company is still doing well due to the commitment and dedication of the staff members, who he added put their utmost best into improving the company.

Looking at the journey of the company which will celebrate its 25th anniversary next year, the CEO said: “It has been tough in the past three or four years, due to low disposable income in the economy, but we are putting in the best and we hope that by next year, the business environment will be better for investors.”
Many of the workers were presented with various gift items, including refrigerators, deep freezers, LG Television, washing machines, GOTv decoders, blender, electric kettles, etc.


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