The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria and the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry have called on the Federal Government to put in place more measures that the organised private sector to cushion the impact of the removal of fuel subsidy.

The manufacturers and commerce chamber, in two separate statements made available to The PUNCH, commended President Bola Tinubu for promising to roll out interventions that would cushion the effect of the hardship across the socio-economic brackets.

MAN, however, noted that the best palliative that the government could offer was to remove the binding constraints that had bedevilled the productive sector.

According to the association, this would engender job creation, payment of salaries and boost production capacity, with the attendant lower prices and improved availability.

“This is far more beneficial than palliatives that would only give nominal relief,” MAN said.

The statement partly read, “The speech of Mr President has demonstrated an appreciation of the downside of the recent economic policy measures taken by the new administration. He has stated the obvious, the fuel subsidy was unsustainable and the prevailing multiple exchange rate was inimical to the growth of the economy.”

MAN also hailed the President’s promise that N75bn would be spent within the next eight months to fund productivity, enhance sustainable growth and accelerate transformation in the manufacturing sector.

It added, “The promise that 75 manufacturing enterprises will access N1bn credit at 9 per cent interest rate per annum and working capital is commendable.

“It is equally important to ensure that the promised 3000 units of 20-seater buses be procured from indigenous automobile Industries. This is a golden opportunity for the Federal Government to demonstrate unfailing commitment to the implementation of the subsisting Executive Order 003, which prioritises the patronage of made-in-Nigeria products.

“Additionally, we expect that other attendant challenges, including the calculation of the import duty for production inputs at the floated rate and the continued denomination of the gas price in dollars, should be discontinued.”

 According to the association, this will help to bring down rising costs of production and ameliorate the lacklustre performance of the manufacturing sector.

“It will help avert an unprecedented upward swing in the price of domestic products and an escalation of the pervading low consumer apathy,” it averred.

On its part, the LCCI, expressed support for the move to invest in the manufacturing sector, noting that it would be pertinent to consider more enterprises as 75 enterprises would not significantly impact the economy.

 “However, we commend the effort to kick-start sustainable economic growth and improve productivity. We believe that if this plan is rigorously pursued, economic growth through the real sector of the economy would be achieved and could revive Nigeria’s sluggish industrialization and expand the GDP,” it added.

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