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Importation of Metals Killing SMEs, FG Laments
Seriki Adinoyi in Jos
The federal government has lamented that the importation of metal product into Nigeria, especially those locally produced in the country has dealt a serious blow on the small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) operating in the sector in the country.
Disclosing this at a workshop on stimulation and promotion of activities of SMEs in the metal sector held in Jos, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. AbdulKadri Mu’azu said, “We import all kinds of metal products, even the ones produced within the country. This is because the quality of products made in Nigeria cannot be compared with those imported.
“Also, the quantity of metal products made in Nigeria cannot meet the demand in the country. Imported products are also in higher in Nigeria because they are cheaper.”
He said the trend was impacting negatively on the sector as SMEs were folding up and jobs being lost, noting that the sad development informed the ministry to organise the workshop.
Mu’azu, who represented by the Director of Steel, Kolawole Olasupo, said the workshop was meant to sensitise and encourage SMEs in the metal industry in Nigeria, and to highlight the role government is expected play in helping them develop their businesses.
He said efforts were on top gear towards making Nigeria’s metal products compete favourably with imported ones.
He added that SMEs would also help to tackle the myriad problem of unemployment facing the Nigeria.
Mu’azu assured that,”With the recent declaration by the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite, and the Minister of State, Uchechukwu Ogah to give metal industry the needed priority, local production will experience exponential growth.”