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Business

AfCFTA: Focus on manufacturing will boost diversification goals – FG

FG has stated that the AfCFTA will provide the platform for a robust focus and support for the manufacturing sector.

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FG releases new details on MSMEs support scheme, budgets N200 billion for loans, FG says 174,574 successfully register for N75 billion MSME survival fund in 48 hours

The Federal Government announced its commitment to Nigeria’s manufacturing sector and says the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) will provide the platform for Nigeria’s diversification dreams, with a robust focus and support for the manufacturing sector.

This was disclosed on Tuesday by the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investments, Amb. Mariam Katagum, a commemoration of the 2020 Africa Industrialization Day (AID) in Abuja. The theme is: “Inclusive and Sustainable Industrialization in the AfCFTA and COVID 19 Era.”

Tuesday’s event was organized by the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investments (FMITI) in collaboration with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). The Minister disclosed the FG is aware of the challenges imposed on Nigerian manufacturers due to the pandemic and revealed the FG is doing its best in terms of viable policies, grants, and infrastructure.

The FMITI is a willing partner in providing the necessary enabling environment that will further stimulate industrialization, accelerate domestic and foreign direct investments,” she said.

“It will as well as ensure a coordinated and integrated approach to Nigeria’s Trade and Industrial policy. This year’s event provides the opportunity to deeply reflect on the state of the industrial sector and the apparent weaknesses which have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It has become critical, more than ever before for governments at all levels in Africa to dedicate more time, energy, and resources for the growth and development of all categories of industries in the continent.

“A critical testimony to our effective responses to issues was evidenced at the onset of COVID-19 when the FMITI set up an Emergency Operation Center (EOC), which guaranteed unhindered production of goods and services in the industrial sector.

“To complement and sustain these efforts, we are repositioning the ministry to establish a similar response mechanism in all our industrial activities as a buffer to cushion the effects of the COVID- 19 Pandemic,” she said.

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(READ MORE: AfCFTA: States should take advantage of continental free trade – FG)

The Minister added that industrialization will boost Africa’s GDP and job prospects, especially with the ratification of the AfCFTA. She also said that a national focus on manufacturing with the African free trade deal will boost Nigeria’s diversification agenda and move towards a non-oil economy.

It is obvious that the implementation of AfCFTA, with a robust focus and support for the manufacturing sector will provide the platform for our quest for diversification to a prosperous non-oil dependent economy.

“Let me assure you that the Federal Government of Nigeria is geared up to meeting the demands of the enlarged continental market, which will be fostered by AfCFTA.

“This will attract more foreign direct investments into key industries and sectors of our economy, especially, where we possess comparative and competitive advantages.

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“The benefits of AfCFTA are quite enormous, some of which include increased food security, through reduction of the rate of protection on trade in agricultural produce amongst African countries,” she said.

(READ MORE: AfCFTA: Continental free trade will reduce value erosion of naira – FG)

What you should know 

The Federal Government announced that it has ratified Nigeria’s membership to the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), ahead of the December 5, 2020 deadline. The agreement goes into effect from the 1st of January 2021.

Yewande Sadiku, CEO of Nigerian Investment Promotion Council (NIPC), said in September that Nigeria was more ready for the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) due to her domestic market manufacturing value addition capacity, which is 7 times the average of the top 20 economies in Africa and other.

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Business

JAMB: How to register for the 2021 UTME examinations

JAMB stated that the registration for the examinations has now commenced in full swing as all the issues have been resolved.

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) had about 3 weeks ago announced the commencement of the 2021 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination and Direct Entry registration exercise on April 8, 2021, to May 15, 2021, with National Identification Number (NIN) made mandatory at the point of registration.

This was put on hold due to the exam body’s effort to ensure that candidates have access to its registration app for the 2021 UTME/DE and also finalise work on its pin vending process before the take-off of the exercise.

However, in a new statement, the spokesperson for JAMB, Dr Fabian Benjamin, said the registration for the examinations has now commenced in full swings as all the issues have been resolved.

JAMB in its public communications gave a guide on how to register for the UTME.

READ: How to link your National Identity Number with your phone number

How to register for the 2021 UTME

  • VALID, FUNCTIONAL E-MAIL, PHONE NUMBER: The applicants must have a valid and functional e-mail account in addition to an active phone number. This is relevant for registration and sending and receipt of information from JAMB.
  • NATIONAL IDENTIFICATION NUMBER (NIN): JAMB has made it mandatory for applicants or potential candidates to provide their NIN at the point of registration or enrolment.
  • VISIT JAMB WEBSITE: After having your email address and NIN, the applicant can proceed to the examination body’s website, where he/she can create a JAMB profile, preferably before buying the form.
  • CHECK JAMB iBass: After creating a profile, you are advised to check JAMB iBass to be sure of your eligibility to take this year’s examination. The information is provided on the official website of the exam body.
  • JAMB e-pin: After confirming your eligibility, you can go ahead to buy your 2021 JAMB e-pin registration from banks and other accredited outlets.
  • CBT CENTRE: Then, proceed to any accredited 700 computer-based test (CBT) centre with your personal details and your profile code.

READ: JAMB sets date for 2021 UTME registration and examination, makes NIN mandatory

What you should know

JAMB a few days ago confirmed the commencement of registration for the 2021 UTME/DE examinations after the initial hiccup.

It stated that applicants must provide NIN at the point of registration with the registration by Direct Entry candidates to run concurrently with that of UTME candidates.

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JAMB also said that the mock examination is expected to hold on Friday, April 30, 2021, for those who indicate interest and are registered before April 24, 2021, with the registration fee for the application still N3,500 and N500 for recommended Reading Text.

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Business

Customs Apapa Command generates N159.58 billion revenue in Q1 2021

Most revenues came through customs duty and charges.

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Here's how much Lagos-Apapa Customs Command generated in 5 months

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Apapa Command stated that it has generated a revenue of N159.58 billion in the first quarter of 2021.

This was disclosed by Ibrahim Yusuf, the Area Controller at Apapa Customs Command, in an interview with newsmen on Monday.

He added that most revenues came through customs duty and charges, citing a 44.8% revenue increase on duty collection compared to the N110 billion generated in the same period in 2020.

READ: Vitafoam declares N1.11 billion as profit in the first quarter of its financial year 2020/21

“The difference recorded was made possible because of robust stakeholders engagement, officers’ resolve in discharging their duties and increased level of compliance in the trade zone,” he said.

He added that the total seizure for the first quarter stood at 28 containers of goods with DPV (Duty Paid value) of N1.87 billion.

“The containers had rice, wheat declared as supermarket items, medical soap declared as baking powder, tramadol and others.

“These are all importations in breach of sections 46, 47 and 161 of the Customs and Excise Management Act CAP C45 LFN 2004 and Schedules 4 and 6 of the Common External Tariff (CET).

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READ: Customs revenue rises by N200 billion to hit N1.5 trillion in 2020

“These cases are at various stages of investigation and in due time will be revealed,” he disclosed.

The Customs boss also revealed that exported goods from Apapa were valued at N41.55 billion in Q1 2021, including manufactured goods such as soaps, textiles, noodles, and agricultural products such as cashew nuts, hibiscus, sesame seeds and other mineral resources.

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