The Federal Government has said that its policies will encourage local manufacturing of products, including cars.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, stated this at the factory of Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company in Nnewi, Anambra State on Monday.
Mohammed said that the policies would favour companies like Innoson, which are manufacturing products locally.
He said that the company was already putting Nigeria on the global map of vehicle manufacturing countries of the world.
The minister stated, “Having toured this factory today, I make bold to say that Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited is a trailblazer in the automotive industry and a shining example of what Nigeria is capable of achieving if it looks inwards and taps into the boundless energy and ingenuity of its people.
“True to its name, Innoson is a manufacturing company, not an assembly plant. It is exactly what the brains behind the National Automotive Industry Development Plan have in mind when they rolled out that policy, which is to curtail the dependence on imports and ensure the growth of the Nigerian automotive industry, using local resources.”
The minister said that the company was living up to the government’s aims of creating jobs, conservation of foreign exchange and acceleration of technical development.
He recalled that the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, in collaboration with the Ministry of Information and Culture, recently commenced the made-in-Nigeria campaign.
The Chairman, Innoson, Chief Innocent Chukwuma said that the firm, which began operation in 2009, had manufactured about 11,000 vehicles, including buses, pick up vans, SUVs, sedans, and garbage compactors, among others.
Meanwhile, the newly appointed Director-General, National Automotive Design and Development Council, Mr. Jelani Aliyu, has said the agency will soon commence the design of local vehicles that will reduce the preference of Nigerians for foreign brands.
He stated this in a chat with journalists in Abuja on Monday.