Dr Okechukwu Enelamah, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, has reiterated the Federal Government’s commitment to encourage the `Made-In-Nigeria’ products to boost the nation’s economy and move it out of recession.
Enelamah made the pledge in Abuja on Wednesday during an interaction with the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, and cross section of public and civil servants.
He said the support of the Federal Government for local content in public procurement would strengthen the Naira, create jobs and expand the country’s entrepreneurial capacity.
The minister said it would also lead to greater competition among local manufacturers and service providers, thereby driving down costs and improving quality.
He called for the support of local content in public procurement by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the Federal Government through the Executive Order 003.
“There is the need to promote economic diversification and boost non-oil exports in the face of economic realities, promote local industry and stimulate the national economy,’’ he added.
According to the minister, Executive Order 3 says that all MDAs shall grant preference to local manufacturers of goods and service providers in their procurement of goods and services.
“Any document issued by any ministry, department or agency of the Federal Government for the solicitation of offers, bids, proposals or quotations for the supply or provision of goods and services (Solicitation Document), in accordance with (1) above.
“Shall expressly indicate the preference to be granted to domestic manufacturers, contractors and service providers and the information required to establish the eligibility of a bid for such preference.
“All Solicitation Documents shall require bidders or potential manufacturers, suppliers, contractors and consultants to provide a verified statement on the local content of the goods or services to be provided,’’ he said.
Enelamah said that the order stipulates that made in Nigeria products should be given overwhelming preference in the procurement of the following items.
“And at least 40 per cent of the procurement spend on these items in all MDAs shall be locally manufactured goods or local service providers that include uniforms and footwear.
“Food and beverages, motor vehicles, pharmaceuticals, construction materials, information and communication technology, furniture and fittings, and stationery.
“Within 90 days of the order, the heads of MDAs shall assess the monitoring, enforcement, implementation, and compliance with the order and local content stipulations in the Public Procurement Act or any other relevant Act within their agencies.
The minister noted that the MDAs should also propose policies to ensure Federal Government’s procurement of goods and services maximises the use of goods manufactured in Nigeria and services provided by Nigerians doing wholly or in the majority.
He added that all findings by the heads of the MDAs should be submitted to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, who within 180 days would consult with the D-G Bureau for Public Procurement.
According to Enelamah, there shall be a report to be submitted to Mr President on the Made-In-Nigeria initiative that forms the consultation.
The minister said the report should also include the specific recommendations to strengthen the implementation of Local Content Laws and local content procurement preference policies and programmes.
He explained that the local content meant the amount of Nigerian or locally produced human and material resources utilised in the manufacture of goods or rendering services.
Contributing, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Raji Fashola said the ministry was doing everything possible to provide adequate and stable power supply to the nation.
“We have developed a power recovery process to ensure that power is stable. We have also embarked on an emergency power project and we have one at Afam.
“With the help of the Acting President, we were able to clear 153 out of 900 containers that were imported with power project equipment for over 10 years,’’ he said.
He said the present administration was trying its best to complete abandoned projects they inherited from the previous government and embarking on new ones