* As Indorama leads manufacturers out 2019 exhibition
By Codratus Godson
The Rivers/Bayelsa chapter of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) may be under pressure to allow some foreign manufacturers especially from Asia to join in its annual exhibitions.
Silver News gathered that the MAN leaders have so far resisted the pressure, insisting that only PH and Bayelsa-based manufacturers can be part of it.
Insiders said they are rather prepared to showcase few that are credible and PH-based than fill the stands with outsiders and destroy the name and credibility of the exhibition series.
The vice chairman of the chapter, Vincent Okuku, who stood in for the chairman, Senator Adawari Michael Pepple at the press briefing of the 2019 AGM, said no product exhibited at the event would come from outside.
Meanwhile, Indorama-Eleme Petrochemicals Limited with Indorama-Eleme Fertilizers & Chemicals Limited and about 50 others would be part of he 2019 exhibition at Atrium on Stadium Road on Tuesday next week to open the AGM week.
The exhibition is part of annual general meeting (AGM) series of the Rivers/Bayelsa states Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) which attracts top manufacturers in the two states dominated by Port Harcourt-based companies.
Indorama is now a giant in manufacturing and a leading exporter of surplus products especially in petrochemicals. Nigeria’s petrochemicals market size has been estimated at $20Bn (N6.2 trillion) minimum and Indorama –Eleme Petrochemicals Limited is said to occupy 10 per cent of this.
Petrochemicals expert s hinted that the huge attention to the petrochemicals sector and the performance of Indorama in the past 15 years has reduced Nigeria’s dependence on the Middle East countries. This has made Port Harcourt a poster-boy of petrochemicals products and major power in the industry.
At the exhibition, Indorama Fertilizer and Chemicals Limited would also be on hand to show the prowess Port Harcourt has acquired in recent times as a fertilizer power, not just because of Notore (former NAFCON) but because of huge investments by Indorama into the agric sector.
Also to be on display would be Meba Farms and Agro-Allied Industries Limited, Brentford Engineering & Construction Limited, Eastern Enamelware Factory Limited, Nalco Energy Services Limited, Far East Paints Lustre Company, Ace footwear Manufacturing Limited, and many more.
The vice chairman of MAN (Rivers/Bayelsa), Vincent Okuku, who is the Group Personnel Manager of Eastern Enamelware Factory Limited, said all the companies would showcase their quality products made in Rivers and Bayelsa states to prove to everyone that their products have competitive advantage over foreign manufactured products.
Speaking, the vice chairman advised manufacturers to devise means of survival the harsh economic weather in Nigeria to avoid shutting down. He warned that shutting down and hoping to reopen is usually difficult.
MAN PH listed areas the government should intervene as energy as the number one headache to manufacturers, roads 9though he said they are getting better in Rivers State), eastern ports, security, and reduction of tariff on raw materials.
He made it clear that insecurity was a response to harsh economic situation which he said has worsened in recent years, but predicted that Nigeria would one day bounce back economically. “Manufacturers have learnt to build relationships with their environments for security purposes but it is moving about in the country that is the main concern”.
Okuku gave the theme of the AGM as “Redeeming Our Economic Potentials Through Manufacturing” to show that all attention should be paid to manufacturing as the only way to totally swim out of the recession that attacked Nigeria few years ago.
A top engineer and manufacturer, Reginald Ike Odiah, is billed to handle the special topic at the AGM proper scheduled for Wednesday, July 10, 2019, at the Atrium Event Centre on Stadium Road.
He said Odiah, the CEO of Bennethh Industries Limited (BBL) was the vice chairman, Manufacturers Power Development Company (MPDCL) and also the chairman of Ikeja Forum, Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) for Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company (IKEDC) Zone. “He was a one time member of the Business Support Group of the National Planning Commission and Economic Policy Committee of the MAN.
Odiah is currently the chairman, Strategic Think-Tank Group of MAN, Ikeja Branch, and is said have a very good grasp of manufacturing issues in Rivers State.
Government officials from both Rivers and Bayelsa states, as usual, are expected to grace the event.