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Emefiele Calls For Reduction In Building Materials Prices, Pledges Support To Manufacturers

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Mr. Godwin Emefiele, Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) at the inauguration of the BUA CEMENT plant in Sokoto.

Reduce Prices of Building Materials, Says Godwin Emefiele

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has pledged the Bank’s support for the manufacturing sector in Nigeria and pushed for a reduction in the prices of building materials in the country in order to make housing more affordable.

Mr. Emefiele made the pledge in his remarks at the inauguration of the new BUA cement plant in Sokoto, performed by President Muhammadu Buhari in Sokoto, on Thursday, January 27, 2022.

Recalling the decision of the Bank to restrict access to foreign exchange for the importation of 43 items, including cement, which could either be produced in Nigeria or for which raw materials could be sourced within the country, Emefiele said the decision had helped to boost the production capacity of cement in the country.

While disclosing that the production capacity of cement companies in Nigeria had increased from 30 million metric tonnes in 2014 to 60 million metric tonnes in 2021, the CBN Governor declared that no dollar had been spent on the importation of cement into Nigeria in the past seven years.

Furthermore, Emefiele commended the BUA cement company for its effort in constructing the plant with no external finance, noting that such private sector initiatives were yielding fruits and were critical complementary ingredients to reducing unemployment and boosting production activities in Nigeria. He said such investments helped to support the CBN’s mandate of promoting stable macro-economic growth in Nigeria.

Mr. Godwin Emefiele, Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) at the inauguration of BUA CEMENT plant in Sokoto.
Mr. Godwin Emefiele, Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) at the inauguration of BUA CEMENT plant in Sokoto.

Emefiele, therefore, assured current and prospective operators in the industrial sector that the CBN stood ready to collaborate with them in enabling the development of a viable manufacturing sector in Nigeria.

“For those who are willing to invest in new greenfield or existing brownfield projects, the CBN will provide all the support needed, both in Naira and dollars needed to import plants and equipment to actualize these investments,” he pledged, adding that the stance was directly in harmony with the resolve of the CBN to create a professional and people-centered Central Bank that will act as a financial catalyst for job creation and inclusive economic growth in Nigeria.

Speaking further, Mr. Emefiele urged manufacturing companies in the construction sector of the country to focus more attention on satisfying the domestic needs in the infrastructure sector, with a view to reducing the prices of cement and steel.

Also speaking, the Governor of Sokoto State, Rt. Hon. Aminu Tambuwal commended the Buhari administration for its commitment towards revolutionizing the manufacturing sector, as exemplified in the cement manufacturing sector, which now provides jobs for Nigeria’s teeming population.

Similarly, the trio of Alhaji Abdul Samad Rabiu, Chairman, BUA Cement Plc; Alhaji Lawal Bello, Chairman, Cement Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (CMAN); and Engr. Yusuf Binji, the Managing Director, BUA Cement Plc, lauded the efforts of the current administration and the CBN is collaborating with stakeholders to boost the economy of Nigeria.

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PhotoNews: LCCI President Visits Association Of German Chambers Of Commerce And Industry (DIHK) In Berlin, Germany

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LCCI President Visits Association Of German Chambers Of Commerce And Industry (DIHK) In Berlin, Germany

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce (LCCI), Dr. Michael Olawale-Cole, CON, has paid a courtesy visit to the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) in Berlin, Germany.

Asiwaju Dr. Michael Olawale-Cole, CON met Mr. Heiko Schwiderowski, Director of the Africa section of the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) during a courtesy visit to the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) in Berlin, Germany on Thursday, September 28, 2022.

LCCI President Visits Association Of German Chambers Of Commerce And Industry (DIHK) In Berlin, Germany
President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce (LCCI), Dr. Michael Olawale-Cole, CON, and Mr. Heiko Schwiderowski, Director Africa Section of the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) during a courtesy visit to the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) in Berlin, Germany on Thursday, September 28, 2022.
LCCI President Visits Association Of German Chambers Of Commerce And Industry (DIHK) In Berlin, Germany
President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Dr. Michael Olawale-Cole, CON, and Mr. Edgar Zedler Head of Regional Affairs NUMOV/ German Near and Middle East Business Association during a visit to the Association office in Berlin, Germany on Thursday, September 28, 2022.

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The Impact Of E-commerce On Supply Chain

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The Impact Of E-commerce On Supply Chain

….as Jumia leads the fast and reliable digital market hub

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The rise of E-commerce and the digital marketplace has changed the composition of consumers buying behavior and expectations, as consumers now expect fast, free shopping and competitive pricing.

This demanding delivery schedule challenges traditional logistics and supply chain models, and companies are now forced to adjust their strategies to provide the low-cost and on-demand delivery service that consumers now demand.

Technological advances in many aspects of our lives have resulted in buying, selling, and other forms of transactions being executed online. Once the consumer makes an online purchase, the work begins to transport the products from the seller to the consumer – and that’s where the logistics sector comes into play.

Statista claims that the logistics sector is one of the pillars of global trade, valued at more than 5.7 trillion euros.

In Nigeria, the logistics and supply sector is growing exponentially. According to the 2018 Logistics & Supply Chain Industry Report, Nigeria’s logistics industry was worth 250 billion naira ($696 million) as of 2018, which represents an increase of 50 billion naira ($140 million) from 2017 statistics. This value has increased over the years. The industry is currently expanding because of improved aviation and rail infrastructure, stronger international relations, expansion in the manufacturing and export industries, and continuous e-commerce growth.

E-commerce and the Supply Chain Sector

The Impact of E-commerce on Supply Chain

The supply chain links numerous parties and organisations, including consumers, enterprises, merchants, financial, and information flows. To deliver high-quality services and products, managing various groups and activities requires a method that can effectively and efficiently integrate interactions among the entities, particularly when organisations use resources from different regions of the world.

The supply chain has grown more adaptable and effective as a result of e-commerce. It has given businesses fresh and creative ways to connect with consumers. E-commerce also has made it possible for companies to offer goods directly to consumers instead of through conventional retail channels.

The increase in e-commerce adoption has made logistics services a necessary component of daily living in Nigeria’s major commercial cities. Access, cycle time, dependability, and cost of logistics are directly impacted by the state of the available infrastructure and the degree of integration. High-performance government agencies, funding, and industry expertise are also essential. Therefore, logistics is a primary marker of economic advancement as represented in trade facilitation and company competitiveness.

How E-commerce is Revolutionising the Supply Chain Sector

The Impact Of E-commerce On Supply Chain

E-commerce has several advantages in the supply chain sector. Firstly, it offers real-time data on inventory levels and order status. This lowers the possibility of stockouts or overstocks by helping businesses to make better decisions about when to produce or order products.

Collaboration between businesses and their suppliers and consumers is also made simpler by e-commerce. For instance, a business can quickly place orders and submit estimates to suppliers. This lessens the amount of paperwork required and helps to speed up the ordering process.

A company like Jumia in the supply chain sector, through e-commerce, connects vendors with consumers across a broad delivery area. As a result, local vendors and international brands can effectively reach more consumers across the country using the platform. In addition, consumers’ shifting preferences, lifestyles, and behaviours have led companies like Jumia to introduce quick commerce to make online shopping more convenient than ever before.

With speed and convenience becoming more important than ever, Jumia opened its logistics services to third parties. Its logistics network smoothly connects hundreds of logistics partners across Nigeria, from small business owners to significant logistics service providers. It offers merchants the advantage of a distributed and scalable logistics service and gives consumers quick access to the products they desire.

What Does the Future Hold for Logistics?

The Impact Of E-commerce On Supply Chain

Technology remains a strategic imperative for supply chain organisations. In the next three to five years, we will see an increase in the adoption of digital supply chain technologies, including those that improve human decision-making.

It is predicted that the future of the supply chain sector will be defined by data, analysed by artificial intelligence, and driven by machines. Gartner has predicted that by 2023, AI techniques will be embedded across 50% of all supply chain technology solutions.

Already, Jumia Logistics is leading the forefront, as the company has invested in machine learning and several data science techniques. This has helped to offer more precise delivery times based on multiple factors, and even to predict the ideal routes that delivery agents can rely on to meet their targets. Consequently, online consumers will have better experiences on the mobile app with greater certainty about the progress of their orders from purchase to delivery.

Furthermore, the company’s move into drone delivery with its recently announced collaboration with Zipline, the world’s largest instant delivery service, is another game changer for the industry. Using the latest instant logistics technology, Jumia will be able to offer consumers living in rural or remote areas on-demand delivery of the products they need.

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Sanwo-Olu To Intending Investors; Lagos Ready For You

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SANWO-OLU TO WOULD-BE INVESTORS: LAGOS READY FOR YOU

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu played the quintessential salesman on Monday, reeling off his administration’s achievements in the past three years to woo investors to the state.

Mr. Sanwo-Olu met a group of would-be investors in New York on the sidelines of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly at a roundtable organized by the Business Council for International Understanding (BCIU) at Park Lane Hotel in the heart of the city. He got an exciting response from the group of corporate giants who urged him to see himself as an ambassador of the private sector to the Federal Government.

With confidence, the Governor spoke of the major strides Lagos State has made in the past three years, despite COVID-19. He used the THEMES Agenda – the six-pillar development plan of his administration – as a guide.

According to the Governor, the state’s GDP has gone up by $5b to about $145,141b, the budget has doubled to about %N1.7tr and infrastructural development has been tremendous. He cited landmark developments in transportation, the first pillar of THEMES, saying the Red Line and Blue Line rail projects were on track to be commissioned by the end of the year. The rolling stocks for the Red Line, which his administration started, he said, are on the way to Lagos and work is going on as scheduled on the stations and the overpasses that will ensure a good transportation experience. There are about four other lines to be built for the state to be covered by rail so as to ease the pressure on roads.

Mr. Sanwo-Olu minced no words on the purpose of the meeting – to attract more investors to Lagos, which has 80 per cent of Foreign Direct Investments coming into Nigeria. He spoke of opportunities in water transportation, saying from seven ferries, the state’s fleet has risen to 21, besides many others run by private operators. Investors can double the fleet, Sanwo-Olu said.

Many of the 15 jetties being built by the state are ready for commissioning, he added, stressing that the aim is to have an integrated urban transportation system, strengthened by strategic road infrastructures, such as the Lekki-Epe Expressway and the Fourth Mainland Bridge, which attracted many investors, among which one will be chosen before the end of the year.

The state, said the Governor, plans to build an Infectious Diseases Research Centre to tackle health challenges, such as COVID-19.

Over 1000 school projects have been completed and “we have introduced technology to make teaching and learning an exciting experience”.

“We are seeing the results. We used to have about 36% pass in School Certificate Examinations; now we have about 80%,” Sanwo-Olu said.

“We are opening brand new schools and introducing technology by giving teachers tablets to aid their job.”

He spoke about the 6,000 km fibre optic cable being laid around the state, saying the first phase of 3,000 km was almost completed. This, he said, will aid faster and cheaper internet connectivity, thereby boosting service in hospitals and schools, besides boosting the impressive activities of the youth in the tech ecosystem.

Mr. Sanwo-Olu described Lagos as the “entertainment capital of Africa”. He cited the recent Headies Awards in Atlanta and added that a Film Village was on the way. He mentioned opportunities in housing and assured would-be investors of “the sanctity of contracts”, with the state appointing new judges to aid smooth operations of the Judiciary.

On security, Mr. Sanwo-Olu described Lagos as “the safest state in Nigeria”. He said small businesses were being supported with grants, even as the youth and women are being encouraged.

It was, however, not all a matter of passing marks. The Governor spoke of challenges, such as refuse disposal, saying about 4000 metric tons were being generated daily. This, in his view, should attract investors, who are willing to turn waste into wealth – a path the state is willing to tread. There are also challenges in water, power, and other sectors, which are awaiting investors, Mr. Sanwo-Olu said.

The applause was loud as Mr. Sanwo-Olu ended his speech.

Replying, the Managing Director (Africa) of McLARTY Associates, Amb. (ret.) Terence P. McCulley, praised Mr. Sanwo-Olu for an insightful account of his administration’s policies and projects. He said many “people who have returned from Lagos have spoken of how they no longer recognize the state because of the developments taking place there. He is of the view that the Governor has done well “because good governance is about providing services.”

Amb. McCulley said: “You can be the ambassador of the private sector to the Federal Government, providing an enabling environment for manufacturing, agriculture, and technology, which are drivers of diversification.”

A participant spoke about the discovery of talents among Nigerian youths in the tech space. He said such talents were being lost to other countries because they could not be retained in Nigeria. Mr. Sanwo-Olu said the government was doing so much to link young graduates to companies that train them to make them employable under its Graduate Internship Programme, which has absorbed thousands of youths. There are other programs, he said, agreeing that a retention strategy for talents was necessary.

At the meeting were Stephen Jennings, founder and CEO of Rendeavour, the organisers, Country Head, Nigeria, Rendeavour, Eyong Ebai, CEO, Africa, GE Healthcare, Mr. Patrick Santillo, Senior Vice President, BCIU, Mr. Biodun Dabiri, Chairman, Lekki Worldwide Investment and many others.

With the Governor were Economic Planning and Budget Commissioner Sam Egube, Energy and Mineral Resources Commissioner Lere Odusote, Information and Strategy Commissioner Gbenga Omotoso, Special Adviser on SDG and Investments Mrs. Solape Hammond, Special Adviser on Public Private Partnership Ope George and Mrs. Ibilola Kasumu, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Science and Technology.

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