Government Urged to Provide Investments Platform for Indigenous Iron, Steel Manufacturers
The federal government has been advised to provide investment platforms that would assist indigenous manufacturers of iron and steel doing business in Nigeria, boost production to foster economic growth in the nation.
The Chairman, Basic Metal, Fabricated Iron and Steel Products, Mr. Kamoru Yusuf, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of KAM Wire Holdings, made the recommendation in Ilorin, after a meeting of stakeholders in the iron and steel sector in the country.
The meeting which was organized to deliberate on the status of the industry and propose strategies for the development of the sector saw attendance from various government ministries, departments
and agencies (MDAs) as well as other local and foreign chief executives of iron and steel companies.
Speaking on the subject matter, Mr. Yusuf pointed out that the government only holds a marginal interest while indigenous investors hold a more vested interest to amplify the growth of the iron and steel sector in the country
Notedly, the future of the iron and steel business in Nigeria will depend to a large extent on the policy thrust of the government, which, he asserted, must be tailored towards rendering necessary support and ease of doing business to investors in the sectors.
He said that it is in the best interest of the general public that the Ajaokuta steel plant should work again in
the hands of local investors.
He stressed the need for Nigeria to pride herself as the giant of Africa by making judicious use of her highly talented, patriotic, and committed indigenous investors with adequate recognition of the stakes of the government.
“Without mincing words, the assets should not be handed over to foreign investor(s),
rather, it should be managed 100 per cent by a competent indigenous investor who had
demonstrated capability with evidence of success stories on existing steel plants and wire processing factories.
With this, government can and may own 40%, while the investor will own 60%. This will no doubt, enhance easy, sustainable, and rewarding business fortunes for the nation. Every phase and processes of the investment must be given cognizance attention and priority.”
Speaking further, he expressed that the capital and proceeds would remain here and re-invested into the economy if indigenous steel investors were given the chance to resuscitate Ajaokuta. The Federal Government could take a cue from its developed counterparts by allowing Credit Insurance Underwriters to operate in Nigeria, adding that investment in the iron and steel business is capital-intensive with huge risks.
“We believe that with policy shift, some benefits will accrue. This would complement the Backward-Integration Policy of the Government, which seeks to preserve our scarce foreign exchange and create employment for millions of Nigerians directly and
There will be more liquidity in the Nigerian economy and Nigeria would have the opportunity of competing with her peers in the continent and across the globe. It will minimize brain drain to foreign countries, in the guise of searching for greener pastures, especially among our teeming youths. Nigeria would be able to participate successfully in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and compete favorably among countries in the continent, “