The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has pegged the composite manufacturers Chief Executive Officers (CEO) confidence index for the second quarter of 2021 at 52. 9 points, a 3.8 point uptick from what was recorded in the first quarter.
Mr. Mansur Ahmed, President, MAN, gave the value in a report to newsmen, an improvement which shows the sector is gaining momentum as Nigeria’s economy stays on a growth path.
Ahmed listed key factors considered during the research to include accessibility and availability of foreign exchange, lending rates, size of the loan to the sector, and government’s capital expenditure.
Others, he said are, operating environment performance regulation, taxation, ports accessibility, local sourcing of raw materials, patronage of made in Nigeria goods, and unsold manufacturing products.
The MAN President said the quarterly research of the association revealed that the aggregate Manufacturers CEOs Confidence Index (MCCI) showed that the CEOs’ confidence improved above the 50 neutral points.
The trend, he said, indicated an improvement of confidence of manufacturers in the economy from the first quarter of 2020 when it recorded 44.4 points.
Likewise, the performances of the individual diffusion factors mimicked the aggregate score, except the index of current employment which recorded 48.3 points in the quarter under review, from 39.7 points observed in the preceding quarter.
“Although the index of current employment is still below the 50 neutral points, it improved by 8.6 points. However, the performance indicated that employment in the sector was still sluggish in the second quarter of the year.
“Current business condition scored 50.8 points in the second quarter of the year as against 46.7 points recorded in the preceding quarter, thus, indicating 4.1 points increase over the quarters,” he said.
He stated that the index of business conditions for the next three months also increased to 54.9 points in the second quarter of 2021 from 53.4 points recorded in the preceding quarter; thus, indicating 1.5 points increase over the quarters.
“In the same vein, index of employment condition in the next 3 months increased to 50.7 points in the second quarter of the year from 47.1 points scored in the preceding quarter.
“Index scores across sectoral groups also showed that indexes of the sectors improved in the second quarter of 2021 from what was obtained in the first quarter of the year.
“Of the 10 sectoral groups, 6 of them scored indexes above the 50 neutral points while the remaining 4 sectors scored below this benchmark in the quarter under review,” he said.
The MAN President stressed the need for banks to build more capacities through designated desks to handle the streaming applications and Form M to ensure seamless and timely processing of forex applications.
He also encouraged the government to continue with the eligible customer initiative and create a platform where all stakeholders would deliberate on the implementation of the regulation and resolve all pending power generation issues.
Ahmed also pushed for the commencement of the implementation of the harmonized taxes and levies project which should be monitored and enforced strictly by the Joint Tax Board (JTB).
“On overregulation, there has been unbridled double regulation of Chemical materials by the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control.
“We encourage the Government to streamline NAFDAC with the control of only food-related chemical materials, while SON oversees non-food related ones.
“Direct intervention from the CBN Governor to ensure that MAN members access the funds, particularly the N1trillion COVID-19 Stimulus Package.
“Update manufacturers with the current feasibility of the N220 billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund (MSMED) and N300 billion Real Sector Support Facility (RSSF) and how they can be accessed,” he said.