Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan said here Monday that as part of ongoing efforts to create more jobs in the country, the Federal Government was reviewing national industrial policies to persuade foreign companies exporting finished products to Nigeria to start manufacturing within the West African nation.
According to a presidency press statement, signed by Dr. Reuben Abati, the Special Adviser to the President on media and publicity, Jonathan was speaking at an audience with the new Japanese Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Ryuichi Shoji.
It said that President Jonathan also emphasized government’s determination to take all necessary action to create new employment opportunities for Nigerian youth.
The President told Mr. Shoji that he expected foreign companies from Japan and other nations with a long history of very profitable economic relations with Nigeria to support his administration’s efforts in this regard by moving from the importation of finished products to local manufacturing and assembling.
He said that his administration was working very hard to provide vital infrastructure, fiscal and monetary policies as well as a regulatory regime that would make it feasible for more foreign companies to begin manufacturing and assembling their products in Nigeria.
Jonathan said: “Japan has been very supportive over the years, but we want you to do more. We consume a lot of Japanese products. We currently import more Japanese products than all other African countries. Japanese companies that export so much of their products to Nigeria have manufacturing and assembly plants in other countries. We want them to start manufacturing and assembling some of their products here too.
“We want to boost local production so that we can create jobs, create wealth and boost our peoples’ purchasing power.”
The President said that additional incentives were also being introduced to encourage more foreign companies to begin manufacturing in Nigeria.
Responding, Mr. Shoji, who had earlier presented his letters of credence to President Jonathan, said that the Japanese Government was following the implementation of the president’s agenda for national transformation with keen interest.
He assured President Jonathan that Japanese companies would welcome an opportunity to contribute more to efforts to boost the productivity of the Nigerian economy.
President Jonathan also received the letters of credence of the new Ambassador of Cuba, Mr. Hugo Ramos Milanes, and the new Portuguese Ambassador, Mr. Simeao Pinto de Mesquita.
Noting that Nigeria already enjoyed excellent political relations with both Cuba and Portugal, the President urged the new ambassadors to work hard to boost trade and economic relations between their countries and Nigeria