By Kadiri Abdulrahman
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Tuesday engaged Stakeholders in the Cotton, Garment and Textile (CTG) industry on how to revamp the industry towards economic diversification and sustainable growth.
The stakeholders, representing different associations within the industry, commended the apex bank for its support and commitment towards growing the sector.
The meeting was called to appraise past efforts towards revamping the industry and to chart a way forward.
Mr Godwin Emefiele, the CBN Governor, said that the CTG industry is integral to Federal Government’s plans for economic diversification and job creation.
In a speech delivered on his behalf by Lamtek Adamu, Deputy Governor in charge of Corporate Services, Emefiele said that the CBN is committed to offering the required support to return the textile and garment industry to its old glory.
He urged the stakeholders to brainstorm and come up with practical solutions to challenges facing the sector.
” The economic significance of the textile and garment industry in Nigeria cannot be over emphasised. In the past we used to have a vibrant textile industry employing hundreds of thousands of people, but now it is a shadow of itself.
“CBN is committed to revamping the sector. Our efforts have started yielding results but we need to grow the sector faster,’ ‘ he said.
He said that the Federal Government added all forms if textile materials to the list of imports ineligible for forex from official sources, as a way of encouraging local production.
He added that the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed down various government efforts, adding that the economy is now witnessing a gradual turn around.
“The CBN remains committed to the successful implementation of all programmes aimed at revamping the sector,” he assured.
CBN’s director of Development Financing, Mr Yila Yusuf, said the meeting was necessitated by the need to move the CTG industry forward.
In a speech delivered on his behalf by Mr Chika Nwaja from the department, Yusuf said that the role of the department is to enhance economic growth and development of critical economic sectors.
He said that the apex bank has already committed N44billion to revamping the sector, financing about 200,000 cotton farmers since 2019.
“By the 2021 wet season, we need to do more for the sector. We intend to grow its capacity by 70 per cent,” he said.
Mr Anibe Achibogu, the President of National Cotton Association of Nigeria (NACOTAN), commended the CBN for its intervention on the sector.
He said that the increased number of cotton cultivated; about 50,000 metric tonnes in 2018 to 120,000 metric tonnes in 2019, after CBN’s intervention, was an indication of success.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that also amongst stakeholders at the meeting were representatives of Ginneries Association of Nigeria, Textile and Garment Manufacturers Association, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria and the newly-formed Garment Manufacturers Association. (NAN)
•PHOTO: CBN Governor Emefiele