By Industrial Digest
The investors in Nigerian Paper industry have called on the federal government to muster the political will needed to launch targeted policies that would significantly help to revive the country’s paper and allied product industry from its current state of comatose.
The industry is estimated to have an annual market value of N3 trillion.
The Chairperson of the Printing and Publishing Group of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Mrs. Layo Okeowo, made this call during a webinar with the theme: “Revitalising the Paper Industry: Challenges and Opportunities in South-West Nigeria,” organised by the LCCI.
Okeowo, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of FAE Limited, described the paper industry in Nigeria as a goldmine waiting for investors to explore.
She said that it was disheartening that despite the potential of the paper industry and also considering its strategic importance in the broader manufacturing value chain, the sector has been neglected by successive administration, which has made the country a net importer of paper products.
She asserted that these policies would encourage “research (Paper Research Institute) on how to grow improved trees, own and manage plantations that would feed the mills, as well as the creation of training sectors that would strengthen the skills of young individuals in paper mill operations.
“We also need friendly policies to encourage higher private sector participation in the paper industry.
“It is very disheartening that despite the potential of the paper industry and also considering its strategic importance in the broader manufacturing value chain, the sector has been neglected by successive administration,” she said.
The Chief Consultant of the B. Adedipe Associates Limited, Dr. Biodum Adedipe, in his presentation, urged investors to rethink their attitude toward the Nigerian paper industry and reposition themselves for the impending growth opportunities for wealth and job creation in the industry.
Adedipe, noted that the wide gap between the paper mill installed capacity of 200,000 metric tonnes and the domestic production need of about three million metric totonnesas an opportunity that would be hard for any investor to ignore.