One of the biggest problems we have in Nigeria is importing everything from foreign countries. This problem is one of those which outlived centuries and is still outliving years till today – unless a radical and drastic approach is made to arrest the situation. To control the importation of many products and services may seem complex and unrealistic in the short run; but if Nigeria will end up transiting from being a mere developing country that we have been – despite being endowed with everything needed – into a developed country, then its expedient that we promote made in Nigeria products and services.
A lot of people will agree with me that there are many products and services we import into the country that can be offered indigenously. Apart from the fact that there are more than enough rich men and women in Nigeria – both the ones that are used to carting away public funds, and those who work for their hard earned million dollars – this country also has abundant human resources capable of shouldering the responsibilities that comes with industrialization, marketing, human empowerment, and other strategies needed in releasing the shackles of importation off our dear country.
The other day, I heard news that we import toothpick into Nigeria. This is pathetic! A country like ours should be sending convoys of toothpick to Togo, Ghana, Niger and co, without collecting a dime from them (if we so wish). But it’s rather sardonic that the first-is-misbehaving-like-the-last. The current recession the country has found her is simply because we depend on importing crude oil abroad, and then we use our money to buy the final products back. What really is the siege preventing us from building our refineries and selling crude oil within the country; while, if this ever happens, people will spend less than #50 to purchase a liter of petrol.
The number of unemployed youths, who are also frustrated by unavailability of jobs, will secure jobs with much more ease if more industries are being built and supported financially to compete against the foreign one. Startups need funds from the government and well meaning Nigerians In the form of loans, grants, gifts, etc.
I hope you know that the best and biggest companies in Nigeria right now are not owned by Nigerians? MTN, MrBiggs, Supersports, and a host of others are foreign! Yet they enjoy the best patrol from both the rich and the poor; they also don’t forget to extort us of our money and use them to develop their countries; while we pride in eating, using and wearing their foreign products.
There are more than enough Made-In-Nigeria that can successfully compete and outwit these companies.
When will Nigeria step up in pushing her own local companies, industries to compete with the best standards out there?
When will Nigerians begin to pride in locally made products?