President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Mansur Ahmed, has said that it is more expensive to transport goods from Lagos to Kano than from China to Lagos.
Ahmed said this while speaking at the 2020 edition of the MAN reporter of the year award in Lagos on Thursday.
The MAN president said competitiveness cannot be achieved in the absence of infrastructure like roads and electricity.
“As the association remains at the forefront for setting the pace for engagement with other African manufacturers, the Nigerian government must also lead by example in ensuring that policies are industry-friendly, as this is the only guarantee for a competitive intra-African trade.
“Modern industry competitiveness depends to a great extent on provision of adequate and efficient infrastructure. There is also the aspect of provision of soft infrastructure – like visa, tariffs, and foreign exchange – that will help ease the process of carrying out business transactions between countries.
“For instance, due to poor infrastructure, it will cost a business owner in Nigeria more to transport goods from Lagos to Kano than it will cost a Chinese business owner to transport the same goods from China to Lagos.
“We must address all these issues since the AfCFTA is not just about trade in goods, but also trade in services,” he sad.
He advised the government to enact industry-friendly policies as a way of assisting them to grow.