Lagos – Mr Mudashiru Obasa, Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, has urged the Federal Government to intensify efforts in curbing importation of goods toward boosting local production.
Obasa, represented by Jude Idimogu, Chairman, House Committee on Commerce, made the plea during the Lagos State Special Day at the 2018 Lagos International Trade Fair on Sunday in Lagos.
The annual international trade fair was organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).
He said that encouraging local production and patronage would boost the nation’s economy, competitiveness and create employment for its teeming youth population.
“It is our collective responsibility as Nigerians to patronise goods made in our country. We cannot continue to grow the economy of other countries at the detriment to ours,’’ he said.
Obasa said that Lagos would continue to be a centre of attraction in terms of commerce, as it would continue to create the enabling environment for businesses to thrive through business-friendly policies and initiatives.
Mrs Olayinka Oladunjoye, Lagos State Commissioner for Commerce, Industry and Cooperatives, said that the annual participation of the state at the fair, afforded it opportunity to host hundreds of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) freely at its pavilion.
She said that the opportunity given the MSMEs would stimulate demand for their products; facilitate inflow of capital through exposures and networking; boost productivity, employment and profitability.
Oladunjoye said that the state was well-positioned to harness its strength and potential; and to connect businesses by encouraging investors to leverage and identify synergies that add value to them.
The commissioner said that the state would continue to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive in the state.
Mr Babatunde Ruwase, President, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), described Lagos State as the commercial, industrial and financial hub of Nigeria and indeed the economic gateway of Sub-Saharan Africa.
He said that National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) latest figure showed that Lagos generated N334 billion in 2017, higher than the combined revenue of 30 states in Nigeria.
Ruwase said that the state was host to several large and small industries with a fast growing population that currently stands at about 22 million.
The LCCI boss said that there was need to proactively tackle the peculiar challenges of urbanisation as the state’s mega status continued to emerge.
Ruwase urged Lagos Government to create a conducive environment for businesses to thrive, adding that the private sector had the greatest potential to generate jobs and uplift the people from poverty. (NAN)