FG Urged to Review Increase in Tariff for Tomato Concentrates


Nosa Alekhuogie

The Group Managing Director of Sonia Foods Industries Limited, Mr. Nnamdi Nnodebe has called on the federal government to consider the plight of local manufacturers and review the increase in the tariff for tomato concentrates from five to 50per cent, and the $1,500 levy on each metric tonne of tomato concentrate imported into the country.

He stated that some of the challenges bedevilling manufacturers include; multiple taxation, epileptic power supply and most importantly government’s policy somersault.

According to him, “the increase in the tariff for tomato concentrates from five to 50 per cent, and the $1500 levy on each metric tonne of tomato concentrate imported is designed to make manufacturers of tomato paste shut down factories.” This development, he averred would lead to loss of jobs and livelihood of Nigerians. He however expressed hope that government will reconsider this policy disposition, emphasising that it is not designed to protect anyone.

“Prior to this time, I was manufacturing outside the country, but then the government called on manufacturers to create jobs at home, and out of my patriotic zeal to do just that and empower

Nigerians, I and other manufacturers invested billions into creating factories and jobs. Not long after the ban on items including materials needed for manufacturing our products was put in place and
most recently the new tariff and other policies which is bound to cause more harm than good for manufacturers with attendant effect on the economy has been put in place.

The government should endeavour to look into these policies for the good of Investors and potential investors who don’t find these policies favourable.”
Having said this, the GMD reassured his customers of his unwavering commitment to improved service delivery in spite of the harsh economic”, he said.

In spite of the biting recession, Sonia Foods over the weekend rewarded its loyal distributors for their outstanding performance in the 2016 business year.
The company chose an auspicious day, the start of the Muslims’ Ramadan fast, to reward its faithful customers.

Nnodebe kicked off the event by expressing gratitude to Sonia’s clients for their relentless patronage and support throughout 2016 and expressed hope that the current year would be more fruitful.

While interacting with his customers, the GMD shared with them the nature of the challenging business environment.
The presentation of the gifts followed immediately afterwards with Kehinde Subair and Mr. Bode Abdulahi rewarded with a brand new SUV each, while the others including Funmi stores, Keneto, Obiko, and Adams were presented with a flat screen TV, and Fridge each. Silifad and Jaji stores went home with a big fridge each. Anuoluwapo and Taliban were presented with a medium sized fridge each, while Ipeyemi stores became the proud owner of a Samsung flat screen TV.

Speaking on behalf of Kehinde Subair, Mr. Olaide Hamzat commended the GMD for always operating an open door policy and ensuring that the products are of premium value to the delight of customers who have chosen Sonia Tomato Paste as their as their preferred brand.

He also expressed gratitude to the company for this unprecedented reward amidst the recession, adding that Kehinde Subair and stores will work extra hard to surpass its target in the future.

On his part, another distributor, Mr Bode Abdullahi of Ogo Oluwa Stores, commended the GMD, for being able to withstand the test of the harsh business environment and still produce one of the best Tomato paste in the country, one with the highest quality there is.