'Produce Export will Enhance Nigeria’s Trade Balance'

The Chairman of Inter-Agency Committee (IAC) for produce export, Mr Rotimi Anifowose, has said produce export, among other things, would boost the nation’s international trade.

Anifowose, who is also the Area Manager of Nigeria Shippers Council in South-west Zone, speaking on the committee’s stewardship in Lagos, South-West Nigeria, said that for the country to maintain a sound economy, export of primary produce should be enhanced.

The committee is made up of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Nigeria Shippers Council (NSC) and the Nigeria Export Promotion Commission (NEPC).

“Nigeria’s trade imbalance was occasioned by heavy imports without commensurate export.

“As a committee, we were mandated to support agencies to change the trade narrative that has made the country an import destination.

“Part of our mandate is also to arouse the consciousness of stakeholders on the prospects and procedures for exports of produce.

“We are to equally encourage indigenous participation of shipping companies in the export trade to expand seaborne trade by five percent annually by attracting investors and promote access to fund for non-oil export,’’ Anifowose said.

Mr Olayemi Abass, an Executive of the committee, said the committee’s stakeholders’ workshop for the southwest Zone scheduled for November 6 at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, would be the pilot one.

According to him, the workshop would be replicated in all the zones of the country to create awareness on the export scheme.

He said that agencies and bodies concerned with export trade and financial institutions would be available to let people know grants and financial windows that they could use for export.