Recession: Manufacturing capacity drops by 20 per cent – MAN –

As the Nigerian economy slips further into recession, manufacturers in the country say their production level has dropped by 20 per cent, blaming dollar scarcity, declining purchasing power, fuel scarcity and infrastructure challenges for their woes.

The manufacturing sector, which had become the driving force of the economy since the crash of oil price at the international market, has been under pressure as companies found it hard to source foreign exchange for the payment of imported raw materials and machinery, while cost of funds continued to rise.

The president of Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria (MAN), Dr Franks Jacob, when the question was posed to him in an interview, said that he could not give the exact naira value of the recession implication, but that “the cost is quite enormous, speaking from the view of manufacturers. At present the majority of our members’ production capacity has dropped to about 20 per cent.

“The problem is that we do not have policy framework that is actionable. The government has not come out with a blueprint on how to solve the problem. The advocacy on the economy so far has been purely fire brigade approach. I have not seen a well-articulated programme or policy because such policy should involve all private sector stakeholders, but what we have today is national economic management team that is composed of only public sector. This would not be able to produce a good policy that is actionable.”

He urged the federal government to involve the private sector and work together with it to come up with a policy framework that can drive the economy in the light of current challenges vis-a-vis low price of crude oil at the international market as well as what is happening in the Niger Delta where militants are vandalising crude oil facilities.

“These are things that will require holistic approach where not only the public sector but all the sectors will come together and come out with a policy framework to address those issues,” he said.