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Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele has linked the collapse of well over 130 textile companies in Nigeria over the last 15 years to issues bordering on power supply and high interest rates by banks.
Giving insights while on a visit to the Governor of katsina State, Mallam Aminu Masari, he revealed that “Textile industries used to be the largest employers of labour in Nigeria after the public service but due to certain constraints, such as smuggling, dumping, lack of access to finance and issue bordering on power, over 130 textile companies have so far perished”.
He revealed further that apart from the collapse of the factories which are mainly in the north, about one million farmers who were planting cotton as their source of livelihood, the ginners, spinners and other indirect employees in the sector all lost their jobs.
While linking the soaring insecurity and kidnapping in the region, Emefiele traced the reasons for the criminalities to youths joblessness and hopelessness, saying “We must revitalise the textile industry to be the largest employer of labour”.
“We feel that we will set the stage rolling, we must come to Katsina State which is the largest producer of cotton to begin a process,” CBN Governor averred.
He explained to the governor of Katsina State that the apex bank had held a lot of meetings with the farmers and other stakeholders’ along the value chain on how to achieve success, decrying that Nigerians must stop smuggling and dumping of cotton and textile materials in order to realise the set textile revival goal.
He hailed the ongoing investigations on textile smuggling kingpins by the anti-graft agencies, saying such drive will further deepen government’s efforts at returning the north to its part glory of textile capital of West Africa.
Responding, Masari said his administration had stepped up support for agriculture and made it clear that reviving the textile industry was the biggest and quickest way of solving unemployment in the country and commended the CBN for its efforts in driving textile backward integration.
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