Nigeria: ‘Influx of imported prepaid meters threatens local manufacturing’

electric-meters26 August 2013, Lagos – Moman Meter Manufacturing Company Limited, MEMCOL, has warned the federal government about the influx of imported prepaid and post-paid meters, noting that the move is threatening investment in local manufacturing of all meters in the country.

Chairman of the company, Mr. Kola Balogun, explained that the despite the huge N8 billion invested in the manufacturing of quality and world class standard prepaid and postpaid meters to meet the local consumption in the country, the federal government still threw its borders open to foreign prepaid and post paid meters discouraging investments in local production of meters.

Speaking during the launching of MEMCOL ultra modern electricity meters manufacturing company by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Olusegun Aganga, Balogun stressed that the company has the capacity to provide prepaid and post paid electricity meters and other metering solutions and applications.

He also decried the lack of patronage by the federal government, saying that the company is yet to receive the desired patronage from the federal government.

“We have not been able to meet our dream to be less dependent on importation of prepaid and post paid meters. Nigeria is currently occupying the fourth position in meter manufacturing, but if this unfavourable importation of meters continues, we would be misplaced in the global market,” he said.

He therefore called on the federal government to implement policies to protect the local industries, saying that this is the only way Nigeria can achieve industrial revolution and ensure economic growth.

“I want to appeal to the federal government through the ministry of industry trade and investment to ensure that whoever has invested in Nigeria must not have any cause to regret. We have good product that we can showcase to the rest of Africa,” he said.

Aganga, in his remarks, said the launching is coming at an auspicious time when the current administration has made industrialisation top priority and is making concerted efforts to ensure that the power sector is totally revitalised to lift the industrial sector to the desired height.

“This is a very high technology company that has keyed into the value chain in the power sector to produce all the meters we need. They have the capacity to produce smart prepaid and post paid meters and I am very impressed with the quality of the meters I have seen here today. I am also excited about the future of this company and the federal government will make sure that we create the enabling environment for them to do extremely very well,” he said.

In his words, “You will agree with me that Nigeria is an endowed nation with abundant human and natural resources. However, to place Nigeria among the top 20 economies in very good time, in line with the goals of this administration, all hands must be on deck to ensure that this country has a vibrant industrial base.” He said no nation has moved from being a poor nation to a rich one by relying on exporting raw materials without a vibrant industrial sector stressing that this is why the ministry has been working hard to ensure that the nation’s industries are positioned well enough to drive the much-needed industrial growth.

He said based on the desire to create an inclusive economic environment where jobs and wealth will be created through the process of intense industrialisation, the federal government has already developed the Nigeria Industrial Revolution Plan, NIRP, based on sectors where the nation has comparative and competitive advantage.

“It is hoped that the launching of this factory, which specialises in the production of pre-paid and post paid meters, will contribute to the growth of the power sector and by extension, the success of IRP. I charge the management to work assiduously in ensuring that this project contributes significantly to inclusive economic growth and development through job creation and wealth generation,” he said.

“I wish to congratulate MEMCOL for this achievement and also ensure both and local foreign investors that returns on investment in Nigeria are among the highest in the world. In this country, the case for investing is compelling,” he added.

The General Manager, Operations, Bank of Industry, BoI, Mr. Joseph Babatunde, said the role of the BoI as a development financial institution is to empower private sector investments geared towards industrialisation by taking bold steps to provide long and short terms loans to developmental projects.

He said the BoI got approval by the federal government to invest heavily in the plastic casing for the company’s meters, maintaining that the aim of this move is to develop the value chain in the power sector.

He therefore called on Nigerians and the federal government to patronise the company’s product pointing out that the success of this company would go a long way in driving the industrial sector and creating massive employment opportunities in the country.

“The quality of this product can measure up to standard anywhere in the world. We believe in this company and we hope it will get the necessary patronage and support from the federal government to make the company competitive in the global market,” he said.

– This Day

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