The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr Okechukwu Enelamah,
has encouraged Nigerians to patronize locally produced goods and
services, saying it is the only way to boost the economy, diversify it
and conserve millions of dollars on importation of foreign goods and
services into the Country.
Enelamah further disclosed that patronizing locally produced goods
will create massive employment to the Nigerian Youth, empower local
entrepreneurs among other benefits.
The Minister who was represented by the Director, Human Resources
Department in the Ministry, Alhaji Dauda Haruna Muhammad, at Flag-off
and Sensitisation Campaign  for patronage of Made-in-Nigeria Products
and Services for the South-East Zone, taking place in Aba ,Abia State,
commended the spirit of various State Governments in emulating and
keying into what the Federal Government was doing in patronizing
locally produced goods and services such as; shoes, bags, trunk boxes,
belts, garments, apparels and wears, engineering fabrications and
machines for both industrial and agricultural uses and other
pharmaceutical products among others.
Enelamah charged Nigerians to key into spirit of using locally
produced products as a step in achieving the present Administration’s
initiatives of Ease of Doing Business and Economic Recovery and Growth
Plan (ERGP).
Earlier in his welcome address, the Abia State Commissioner for Trade
and Investment, Chief Charles Ogbonnaya ,said that the choice of Aba
(Abia State) as venue for this forum flag off Campaign for patronage
of made –in- Nigeria products for the South East Zone may not have
come as a surprise considering the unique position of Aba as one of
the most outstanding centres of commercial activities and a hub of
locally produced and fabricated products in Nigeria.
Chief Ogbonnaya stated that the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade
and Investment must be commended for this initiative, saying, there
cannot be a better time to mount the campaign for the patronage of
made in Nigeria products than now that emphasis is shifting towards
diversification of our national economy from over dependence on oil
and imported goods, emphasizing that, there is no better way to fix
our national economy than to start to appreciate and encourage
patronage of our locally made goods.
In his good will message, the Enugu State Commissioner for Commerce
and Industry, Mr Sam Ogbu- Nwobodo stated that this campaign is quiet
apt and Germaine at this time as it will promote the made-in-Nigeria
goods and services as well as encourage Nigerians to buy and utilize
goods and services that are made in Nigeria. ‘’This will obviously
increase the Nation’s Industrial Productivity, increase import
substitution with the reduction in the importation of goods and
services that we can produce. In other words, this will create a lofty
situation where we use what we produce and produce what we use’’ he
Nwobodo disclosed that government’s efforts should be intensified
towards the provision of steady power and energy supply, support for
Medium and Small  Enterprises (MSEs), Security, world class
transportation infrastructure, tax incentives and general improvement
in the enabling business environments.
Speaking further he said “already Made-in-Nigeria goods such as
refined made in Aba shoes, garment products and Nollywood movies to
mention but a few, are creating waves in international markets’’.
It would be recalled that similar Sensitisation Campaign for patronage
of Made-in-Nigeria Products and Services were launched in Abuja, Kano
and Lagos.
Ibrahim Haruna
Deputy Director, Press and Head, Press and Public Relations Unit, FMITI