Abel Abel

Why I Will Only Drive In Nigerian Made Cars – Minister

LAGOS, Nigeria (May 1, 2014) - Nissan became the first major manufacturer to build a car in Nigeria in response to the introduction of the new Nigeria Automotive Policy.

The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, on Monday declared that as soon as the Federal Government starts implementing the budget, he will only ride in cars manufactured in Nigeria.

He also stated that all 17 agencies under the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology will be directed to patronise Nigerian made cars, adding that the move was to promote the use of locally produced goods.

Onu, who disclosed this while hosting a delegation from Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited at the headquarters of the ministry in Abuja, further noted that vehicles manufactured in Nigeria had 60 per cent local content.

He said, “Through Innoson we can now see vehicles that are manufactured in Nigeria with 60 per cent local input. This is a great feat and we will corporate and collaborate with you and will lead the very urgent need in Nigeria to patronise Nigerian made goods. The Federal Ministry of Science and Technology will do it by example.

“We are just waiting for the budget to be out. But I will like to make this known to our country that as soon as the budget is out, the minister of science and technology will only drive in cars made in Nigeria and this include vehicles in the Ministry of Science and Technology. Also, all our 17 agencies will be directed to patronise made in Nigeria vehicles.

“We believe that leadership by example is the best form of leadership and this ministry will carry this beyond here. This will ensure that we find value in the things that we produce. There is no other way that Nigeria can become a great nation except when we as Nigerians patronise goods made in Nigeria.”

He assured the delegation that the government would support local manufacturers by clearing the challenges faced by operators in the manufacturing sector, adding that this would create wealth for Nigeria.

Earlier in his address, the Chief Executive Officer, IVM, Dr. Chukwuma Innocent, stated that his firm was partnering the Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Air Force in the production of armoured vehicles as well as parts for some military hardwares.

Innocent stated that if the request for the provision of a favourable manufacturing environment for manufacturers across the country is met by the Federal Government, in the next five years, his firm will start 100 per cent production of vehicles in Nigeria.

He said, “We use 60 per cent of local content on all our brands. If the requests concerning our challenges are granted, we assure you that such things like motor engines which we currently import shall be produced here in Nigeria by our group.”

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