July 13, 2018

Nnewi Chamber of Commerce highlights challenges of business sustainability

Nnewi Chamber of Commerce highlights challenges of business sustainability

File image of spare parts shops.

The Nnewi Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NCCIMA) has expressed worry over the extinction of businesses in Nigeria, especially after the demise of the visionary entrepreneur.

NCCIMA expressed the worry at the 2018 edition of its Annual General Meeting (AGM) and unveiling of its 9th President in Nnewi on Thursday.

The theme of the AGM is, “Making of a Successful and Sustainable Enterprise: Challenges and Opportunities’’.

Delivering a Lecture, Dr Okechukwu Mbonu, former Managing Director of Sierra Leone Breweries, said business must be supported to succeed as it was a step toward the quest for Nigeria’s industrialisation and economic development.

Mbonu, a Chattered Engineer, blamed high business mortality on poor business plan development, inadequate consultancy and succession plan by most Nigerian entrepreneurs.

He also identified external factors such as long term financing, lack of adequate locally oriented technical and management expertise as some of the bane of businesses.

The expert said there was need for effective legal regime, fair competition, and absence of multiple taxation, friendly operational environment and policy consistency for Nigerian businesses to be successful and sustainable.

“Even when some locally owned businesses can overcome the identified challenges which are external, most of them are observed to shrink or collapse immediately after the demise of the visionary entrepreneur,’’ he said.

Contributing, Dr Nkem Okeke, the Deputy Governor of Anambra, commended the Chamber for its vibrancy, resilience and contribution to economic viability of the state in spite of identified challenges.

Okeke said efforts were being made by the Gov. Willie Obiano administration in collaboration with the Federal Government to build a power substation in Nnewi to provide electricity to power the industrialisation drive in the area.

He, however, decried paucity of funds which was delaying the project.

Also, the immediate past President, Mr Linus Ilozue, paid glowing tribute to the founding fathers of the chamber for conceptualising the idea which, he said, had positively impacted members.

Ilozue noted that the chamber under his watch had purchased and fenced a piece of land that would house NCCIMA, adding that no nation could effectively engage in international business without strong a chamber.

He said the chamber was already discussing with the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN), on how to improve power supply to the industrial town of Nnewi.

He noted that adequate power supply to the town would enhance productivity.

In his acceptance speech, new president of the chamber,Mr Ifeanyi Uzodike, Managing Director of Cutix Plc., promised to move it to a new level even as he solicited the support of all members.

Other lecturers at the event include Chief Robert Anwatu, Chairman CEO Roban Stores, who spoke on “Building and Sustaining Retail Business’’.

The Youth Wing of NCCIMA was also inaugurated at the AGM.