Lagos – An automobile expert, Mr Davies Ikegbula, on Monday urged the Federal Government to ensure the effective implementation of the National Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP), to boost the nation’s economy.
Ikegbula, the Director of Operations, Iron Products Industries (IPI), made the plea during a media tour of the company’s facilities in Lagos.
He said that given the necessary incentives, the auto plan was capable of encouraging indigenous automotive manufacturers, such as IPI and Innoson.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the automotive policy aims to revitalise the auto industry by discouraging vehicle importation and encouraging local production.
He said: “the NAIDP or the automotive policy has the potential to catalyse the development of the nation’s automotive sector into a major base for the country’s economy, if the provisions are effectively implemented.
“It could also make Nigeria the hub of the continent’s automotive industry.
“A timely execution of the policy can help boost activities in the industry and lead to the production of affordable, but top quality vehicles for the local market and for export.”
Ikegbula added that the policy was also capable of attracting more original equipment investors into the country.
“These companies, both existing and prospective investors, have the capacity to meet the nation’s vehicular needs, including passenger cars, commercial vehicles like pick-ups, light and heavy duty vehicles, amongst others.
“On our part, we have worked all over Nigeria, and our products can be seen on Nigerian roads, factories, buildings and warehouses, landing jetties, and upstream filling stations, storage depots, and truck bodies,” he said.
Ikegbula, therefore, urged the government to address challenges that continue to negatively affect manufacturers such as epileptic electricity supply and unfavourable exchange rate.
“The Federal Government should also introduce incentives and policies that will help the local industry to thrive,’’ he added.
NAN reports that IPI commenced business as a structural steel works company and has continued to grow and diversify into all sectors of the steel fabrication industry. (NAN)