Lagos vows to empower manufacturers

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Lagos State Government is to empower more start-ups and local manufacturers, by helping them to access markets and create values for their locally-produced products.

The state, according to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, will achieve this by pursing a private sector financed to encourage local manufacturers and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) operating in the state.

He spoke yesterday when he visited the venue of the ongoing International Trade Fair organised by the Lagos State Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).

Sanwo-Olu said creating a sustainable financing and market opportunities for SMEs would complement his administration’s drive to grow the economy, adding that giving incentives would catalyse the local market and encourage manufacturers.

He said: “My presence at this trade fair is to encourage a lot of our SMEs that have come here to display their goods. This is real governance and collaboration in action. Having gone round the pavilions, I realise that we need to upscale this and give more start-up opportunities.

“We need to come to terms with the challenges our young and upcoming manufacturers are facing in accessing markets to sell their products. This is the idea behind this trade fair, to interface with market and give users a new lease of experience in various products. This also demonstrates the can-do spirit of Nigerians. We need to look for international finance that can be leveraged by SMEs to make this bigger.”

The governor praised LCCI for keeping faith in the ability of local manufacturers, noting that the government would also consider provision of a permanent site for the trade fair to ease operational challenges for the organisers.

“We will see, over the next couple of years, how we can get a permanent site for the trade fair, so that we don’t need to re-invent the wheels every year,” he said.

While declaring intercultural textiles business open, Sanwo-Olu harped on the need to integrate Nigerian textile products into the Chinese market. This way, he said, trade relations between the two countries would be further strengthened.

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