- LCCI Cautions Govt Over Forex Ban on Textile Imports
The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has advised the Federal Government to reconsider the Central Bank of Nigeria’s ban of forex to textile importers.
It argued that given the position of Nigeria in Africa as a leader in fashion, the range of fabrics produced by the Nigerian textile industry could not support the industry in terms of the quantity and quality.
The Director-General, LCCI, Muda Yusuf, said this in a statement made available to our correspondent on Sunday.
Yusuf, who noted that his submission was not to diminish the importance of the local textile industry in any way or the significance of the nation’s industrialisation, however, added that this was to underscore the importance of a strategic approach to industrialisation.
The LCCI DG said before such policy pronouncement, the government ought to have strengthened the capacity of domestic industries, enhanced their competitiveness and reduced their import dependence as espoused in the Nigeria Industrial Revolution Plan.
Yusuf said, more importantly, the power issue must be addressed, as it was almost impossible to achieve rapid industrialisation without resolving the issue of power and the deficit in key infrastructure.
He said, “Today, Nigeria is clearly the leader in Africa as far as the fashion industry is concerned. Currently, the range of fabrics produced by the Nigerian textile industry cannot support the fashion industry in terms of quantity and quality.
“This vibrant industry should not be sacrificed on the altar of textile industry regeneration. This submission is not to diminish the importance of textile industries in any way or the significance of industrialisation. It is to underscore the importance of a strategic approach to industrialisation.
“The starting point is to strengthen the capacity of domestic industries, enhance their competitiveness, and reduce their import dependence as espoused in the Nigeria Industrial Revolution Plan.
“More importantly, the power issue needs to be addressed. It is almost impossible to achieve rapid industrialisation without resolving the issue of power and the deficit in key infrastructure.
“Textile production is energy intensive. This is a high energy cost environment and it is very difficult for any energy intensive sector to survive.”
Listing other implications of the CBN’s ban on forex for textile import, he said the exclusion had grave implications for businesses in the fashion, tailoring, fashion accessories and garment industry in the country.
He said the industry was one of the fastest growing industries and had created amazing opportunities for many young Nigerians to express their creativity and innovation, adding that the sector was estimated at N5tn, with about 500,000 jobs.
He said, “The industry provides significant value addition to fabrics, whether imported or domestically produced. The policy contemplation of the CBN will put all of these at risk.”
Yusuf stated that trading in textiles was also a major economic activity in the country, both in the northern and southern parts of the country, and hundreds of thousands were making their living from there.
He said, “It is a market that responds to changing tastes and fashion trends in the country and beyond.
“Hundreds of thousands of women and men make a living in the marketing of textiles. The policymakers cannot afford to ignore this segment of economic players. The traders are the bridge between the producers and the consumers.
“It is, therefore, very important for policymakers take into account the full ramifications of the consequences of policies and collateral outcomes.”
Yusuf explained that the textile industry had been a beneficiary of several fiscal incentives and protectionist measures over the years, yet it had remained stagnant.
He said, “Some of them have even gone into receivership as they could not repay their loans. The lesson is that we should deal with the fundamental issues of production competitiveness in our economy.
“The textile industry needs to be saved from the excruciating burden of high operating and production cost.”
Yusuf added that in order for the local textile industry to experience a boom as in the line of Executive Order, President Muhammadu Buhari should order that all uniforms of military and paramilitary institutions should be made from Nigeria- produced textiles.
He said, “This is a low hanging fruit that could be explored while the issue of high production cost is being addressed.”
Yusuf, however, commended the FG on its move to create special economic zones in the six geopolitical zones in the country, describing it as a step in the right direction.
He stated, “The Bank of Industry has also done a great deal to provide funding for industries, textiles inclusive. But we need to deal with the fundamentals.
“In the meantime, as we progress to the next level of the Buhari administration, policy coordination and collaboration among the economic ministries and agencies is imperative. There should be collaboration and coordination between the CBN, the Finance Ministry, Budget and Planning and Trade and Investment on trade policy issues.
“The boundaries of monetary policy need to be properly defined. Exclusion of sectors from the forex market is not a monetary policy issue. It is a trade policy matter.”
Transcorp Hotels Expand into Marketplace, Launches Aura to Connect People, Hoteliers, Others
Transcorp Hotels Plc, on Thursday, announced it has launched a new digital platform, Aura, through which people can book accommodation, restaurants and experiences.
Aura, Transcorp’s first in the alternative accommodation segment, is part of the company’s asset-light model, leveraging technology to deliver true hospitality, exciting experiences, and drive shareholder value.
“It’s a new dawn in the hospitality industry! I am thrilled to introduce you to Aura by Transcorp, the digital platform we are using to connect people to quality accommodation, great food, and awesome experiences,” Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Transcorp Hotels Plc. Dupe Olusola said.
“For more than 30 years, Transcorp Hotels Plc has been at the forefront of creating a superior guest experience at our locations. Today, our commitment to innovation has offered us an opportunity to extend this beyond the hotel premises,” Olusola added.
The launch of Aura by Transcorp is one of the most significant developments in the company’s history as it seeks to transform the travel and tourism industry in Africa by focusing on three important components of travel, whether for leisure or business — where you stay, what you eat and how you spend your time. With its people-driven hospitality model, Aura is set to revolutionise travel and help remind Africans of our deep history of hospitality.
Speaking on the launch of Aura, Obong Idiong, Chief Executive Officer at Africa Prudential Plc, Aura’s technology partners, expressed his excitement. “Finding the right accommodation when you travel can be incredibly complex. Options available for the right prices are often limited, and travellers sometimes end up with accommodation that taints the travel experience. Transcorp Hotels Plc has been able to fix that with Aura and we are proud to be associated with them.”
“To ensure topnotch user experience, we built a solution to drive digital transformation through the adoption of shared living spaces for the Aura business. With an advanced search algorithm powered by artificial intelligence, Aura determines the relevance of locations taking into consideration, the customers’ preferences and requirements to meet them at the point of their needs,” Idiong added.
Priscilla Adeboye, a travel enthusiast and early adopter of Aura, said the global pandemic has pushed international travel down her list. “But I still want to be able to take some time off work or spend a weekend away from home with the family. I have found incredible homes on Aura that meet my need for space and privacy.”
Siemens Energy Nigeria Appoints Seun Suleiman as Managing Director
Seun Suleiman is the New Managing Director of Siemens Energy Nigeria
Mr. Seun Suleiman is the new managing director of Siemens Energy Nigeria, the company announced on Wednesday.
According to the statement released by the energy company, Suleiman will be responsible for the entire management of operations and decisions on business policies and corporate strategy.
Commenting on his appointment, Suleiman said, “It is an absolute honor to lead the business for Siemens Energy Nigeria and I look forward to delivering on the brand’s promise of excellence.”
Suleiman joined Siemens Energy in 2014, bringing over 15 years’ experience and deep expertise in the private sector across Europe and West Africa.
The statement said, “He is an accomplished business strategist and success-driven leader with strong business acumen. Suleiman has also been a core member of the executive management team at Siemens Energy serving in roles as Sales Director West Africa – Service Distributed Generation Oil & Gas and Vice President Service & Digital.
“Prior to this, he also held various functional and managerial positions with ABB Ltd UK, ABBNG Nigeria, Schneider Electric Nigeria and Dresser-Rand Nigeria Ltd.”
It added that Suleiman was experienced in establishing operational excellence with specific competence in the power, oil and gas sectors.
FG Reopens Osubi Airport Warri for Daylight Operations
FG Reopens Osubi Airport Warri for Daylight Operations
The Federal Government on Monday said the Osubi Airport in Warri has been reopened for daylight operations.
The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Siriki, disclosed this in a tweet.
The airport was closed in February 2020 over mismanagement and debt allegation involving aviation service providers and airport management.
However, Oberuakpefe Afe, a lawmaker representing Okpe/Sapeie/vaie federal constituency, recently moved a motion for the Federal Government through the ministry of aviation and relevant authorities to reopen the airport for flight operations.
On Monday, Hadi Siriki said “I have just approved the reopening of Osubi Airport Warri, for daylight operations in VFR conditions, subject to all procedures, practices and protocols, including COVID-19, strictly being observed. There will not be need for local approvals henceforth.”
I have just approved the reopening of Osubi Airport Warri, for daylight operations in VFR conditions, subject to all procedures, practices and protocols, including COVID-19, strictly being observed. There will not be need for local approvals henceforth. 🇳🇬🙏🏽🇳🇬
— Hadi Sirika (@hadisirika) March 1, 2021
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