It cannot be seen to be a misnomer when it is said that Industrialisation generates employment opportunities, provides educational opportunities, encourages advancement and innovation, and better utilises resources.
All of these benefits and more make industrial development extremely valuable to a population and the local economy.
The benefits that are derivable from industrialisation no doubt surpass the foregoing. Rather, the economic growth provided by industrial development is a well-sustained growth that can transform an economy.
As commonly known, industrial growth and economic growth go hand in hand because economies thrive when an industry is growing because a growth in the industry means more jobs, more money, and more opportunity.
It is unarguably against the foregoing background that the speech delivered by Abdul Samad Rabiu, the Founder and Chairman of BUA Group, was listened to with rapt attention by business leaders that attended his investiture as Fellow of the Institute of Directors on Sunday, December 21, 2020.
Rabiu, in his speech titled, “Industrialising Nigeria: It is time for cross-pollination, not cross-purposes”noted that there was need for more people to come and invest in various sectors of the Nigerian economy.
He enthused, “We have the Climate, People, Land, Water, Mineral Resources, and we have almost everything. The final piece is we must begin to produce what we consume and consume what we produce.
“Where we cannot do either, we must become a regional powerhouse in value-addition, if not for anything, but to take advantage of the benefits of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). The African Continental Free Trade Area presents a massive opportunity for us as a country and unless we take full advantage, we may become a dumping ground due to Nigeria’s unique position of being Africa’s largest economy, and our huge population.
“We must begin to look at a cross-pollination of our industries amid economic integration and finally, as Nigerian business leaders, we need to be less shy and more bullish in taking advantage of opportunities. This is my charge to us all, and I humbly expect to cheer on, and learn from your successes in the coming financial year”.
He explained that as business leaders that opportunities are not been explored and exploited enough, and that few business leaders and investors are doing it, and alluded to the fact that BUA Cement is doing it but definitely cannot do it alone.
He expatiated, “I say this because there are huge opportunities in mining, manufacturing, and the agricultural value chain, just as there are in the services space. Agriculture is a prime area in need of serious intervention, and we need more Nigerians to step up here.
He queried, “Do you know that, 60% of the world’s arable land resides in Africa? And as is often said, “If potential were edible, Africa will be the best fed continent in the world.