By Providence Emmanuel

lagos—Entrepreneurs in Nigeria have decried poor patronage of made-in-Nigeria products, saying 60 percent of Nigerians buy foreign-made products.

Speaking at the Association of International Students in Economic and Commercial Sciences, AIESEC, Alumni Africa Regional Congress in Lagos with the theme: “Positioning for Global Impact”, they attributed the poor patronage to lack of enabling environment, such as steady power supply, security, among others.

Among the entrepreneurs who spoke at the event were founder, Happy Coffee, Mrs. Adeyinka Tekenah; founder Keex Footwear, Mr. Jide Ipaye; Technology Assistant, Industry, Trade and Investment, Office of the Vice President, Mr. Ayokunnu Ojeniyi, Managing Director, Afex, Mr. Ayodeji Balogun, said: “Until we empower individuals, we cannot effect the change we want.  60 percent of Nigerians buy foreign products.

Government does not need to provide money for businesses to run in Nigeria, all we need from government is the enabling environment to do business. An average Nigerian is doing so much to ensure his business survives,” they said.

According to Tekenah, “We need to have basic framework on how an economy should work. There are not enough policies to support entrepreneurs, though, some states are giving out loans to small businesses, however, there must be some level of political and economic framework on how to build the economy. There should be polices that support small business to contribute to the economy’s development.”

On his part, Ipaye advised that entrepreneurs must leverage on available technology to scale up their businesses

President, AISEC Alumni Nigeria, Mrs. Brenda Nwagwu, said the association remained committed to developing the right processes and structures to boost business creation and sustenance on the continent.

Nwangwu stated that with the help of successful opinion leaders and captains of industries, AIESEC Alumni Nigeria was planning to reach over one million students across the country in the first year of the Inspire Africa Project, thereby addressing the forth and eight Sustainable Development Goals of quality education and decent work and economic growth.


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