Coronavirus: importers lament negative impact on businesses

Some Nigerian businessmen have said that the outbreak of Coronavirus in China since January has grounded their businesses.

The traders who import products from China told Newsmen in Abuja on Thursday, that some of the goods they had paid for were yet to be delivered.

Mr Ndubuisi Anuwa, a businessman who deals on computer accessories imported from China, said the development was worrisome and negatively affecting his business.

“My container is supposed to have landed in Nigeria from China since January but I have been calling my contacts there and they said that they cannot send it now because they are no longer going out.

“In fact as it is, they no longer pick my calls because according to them, I am disturbing them with calls.

“I am very worried because my millions, my sweat is tied up somewhere. As it stands, I am not sure of the status of my goods.

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“Even though I am happy that they want to take precautions before bringing the goods in, I am running out of patience because I took some loans to seal that business,’’ he lamented.

Mr Eric Okaro, also a businessman who deals on handsets and its accessories from China, regretted that goods were not coming into the country like before.

“I buy from somebody in Lagos that travels to China. The person has not been able to travel to bring in goods since this Coronavirus issue.

“The goods he has in his warehouse before this outbreak, he is now selling them at an exorbitant rate.

“Phones that were going for between N10, 000 and N12, 000 are now being sold to us at the rate of N15, 000 and the same applies to others depending on the prices,’’ he explained.

A public servant, Mrs Lucy Atih, told NAN that one of her relations travelled to China for a business trip before the Coronavirus outbreak and had been stranded there.

“He has been calling us that he cannot come back because he has not finished what he went there to do.

“He went to buy goods but unfortunately, the Coronavirus issue started. He lodged in a hotel and according to him, he has overstayed in China but does not want to come back and be quarantined.

“He said he is taking all the necessary precautions. I will advise everyone to handle with care whatever accessories they are using that comes from China for now, until the outbreak of the disease is over,’’ Atih said.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) first started in Dec. 2019 in Wuhan, China and had been declared a global emergency by the World Health Organisation (WHO).


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