We have presidential directive to revive textile sector, says minister
Hajia Aisha Abubakar, the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, said on Monday the ministry had received a presidential directive to revive the cotton, textile and garment (CTG) sector.
Abubakar disclosed this at a meeting with members of the National Committee for the Implementation of the Cotton, Textile and Garment Policy in her office in Abuja.
She stated that President Muhammadu Buhari is passionate about the revival of the cotton, textile and garment sector in view of its huge potential for job creation across its value chain.
“Our president is very passionate about this particular sector and we have been mandated to identify challenges that keep on occurring in this particular sector and chart the way forward.
“The CTG sector, which used to be highest employer of labour next to government, with over 175 mills at its peak in the 1980s is now a shadow with barely 30 companies operating presently.
“This meeting is called to review the activities thus far and to chart the way forward. In this regard, we should identify the short, medium and long term programmes.
“As we deliberate, I urge you all to put the interest of Nigeria uppermost in our discussion, and the government is determined to do everything to revive this all important sector.
“The country is looking forward to the revival of this sector and I believe we are going to be on the right path at the end of this meeting.“
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the committee was inaugurated on Jan. 20, 2015 following the launch of the policy, which was approved by the Federal Executive Council in Dec., 2014.
The chairman of the committee, Mrs Omotanwa Awobokun, said the meeting was convened to brief the minister on the work plan and strategy for implementation of the policy.
Awobokun said the policy was a component of the National Industrial Revolution Plan (NIRP) designed to address the challenges in the entire value chain from cotton production to fashion designing.
She identified the challenges to include high cost of funding, unstable power supply, obsolete equipment, plants and machinery, cotton contamination, smuggling, counterfeiting and lack of quality assurance infrastructure.
The chairman added that the members of the cross-sectoral committee were drawn from relevant public and private organisations whose mandates touched on the identified areas of challenges.
The Federal Ministries of Finance and Agriculture and Rural Development; the Bank of Industry, the Raw Materials Research and Development Council, the National Cotton Association of Nigeria and other members were represented at the meeting.
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