The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has revealed that the composite manufacturers Chief Executive Officers (CEO) confidence index for the second quarter of 2021 rose to 52. 9 points, a 3.8 point increase from the first quarter.
This was disclosed by Mr. Mohammed Mansur, President, MAN, in a report to newsmen on Wednesday in Lagos, according to the News Agency of Nigeria.
He listed areas including accessibility and availability of foreign exchange, lending rates, size of the loan to the sector, and government’s capital expenditure during the research.
Others are operating environment performance regulation, taxation, ports accessibility, local sourcing of raw materials, patronage of made in Nigeria goods, and unsold manufacturing products, as key factors considered in the research.
Mansur said the quarterly research of the association revealed that the aggregate Manufacturers CEOs Confidence Index (MCCI) showed that the CEOs’ confidence improved above the 50 neutral points.
“Although the index of current employment is still below the 50 neutral points, it improved by 8.6 points.
“However, the performance indicated that employment in the sector was still sluggish in the second quarter of the year.
“Current business condition scored 50.8 points in second quarter of the year as against 46.7 points recorded in the preceding quarter, thus, indicating 4.1 points increase over the quarters,” he said.
He added that the index of business condition for the next three months also increased to 54.9 points in the second quarter of 2021 from 53.4 points recorded in the preceding quarter; thus, indicating 1.5 points increase over the quarters.
He added that the index of employment condition in the next 3 months increased to 50.7 points in the second quarter of the year from 47.1 points scored in the preceding quarter.
“Index scores across sectoral groups also showed that indexes of the sectors improved in the second quarter of 2021 from what obtained in the first quarter of the year.
“Of the 10 sectoral groups, 6 of them scored indexes above the 50 neutral points while the remaining 4 sectors scored below this benchmark in the quarter under review,” he said.
He urged banks to support the manufacturing sector with more designated desks to handle applications for Form M to ensure seamless and timely processing of forex applications.
“On overregulation, there has been unbridled double regulation of Chemical materials by the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control.
“We encourage the Government to streamline NAFDAC with the control of only food-related chemical materials, while SON oversees non-food related ones.
” Direct intervention from the CBN Governor to ensure that MAN members access the funds, particularly the N1trillion COVID-19 Stimulus Package.
“Update manufacturers with the current feasibility of the N220 billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund (MSMED) and N300 billion Real Sector Support Facility (RSSF) and how they can be accessed,” he said.
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Nairametrics also reported that the Federal Government said that it has begun moves to reduce the cost of gas for power generation across the country as part of efforts to boost the manufacturing sector.
This is as industry players have identified cost competitiveness as a major challenge in the manufacturing sector a huge part of which can be attributed to power.