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FG now to commence 774, 000 jobs January 5

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The Federal Government has said the 774, 000 Special Public Work (SPW) jobs will now commence on January 5.

Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, stated this on Sunday in Abuja.

The programme, designed for artisans to do public work for three months for N20,000 per month, had suffered a setback due to conflict between the minister and a former Director-General of the  National Directorate of Employment, Nasir Ladan, who was sacked last week by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The minister said the programme ran into some hiccups, hence the delay in the commencement.

The sacked Ladan reportedly worked with the National Assembly to undermine Keyamo who is the supervising minister.

Twice, the Federal Government had announced a new date to start the programme designed to employ 774, 000 Nigerians in the 774 local government areas but had to be suspended, despite the release of N26 billion as stated by Ladan and procurement of equipment.

Keyamo said an official announcement would be made on Wednesday after the end of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting.

The minister said he expected the programme to go on smoothly with the exit of Ladan.

He said, “We have taken a firm decision to begin on January 5, 2021 but I am going to make an official announcement after FEC on Wednesday. We had a few hiccups in December but we have taken a decision to begin January 5 which is a Tuesday.

“The programme will run from January to March 2021 which is pure dry season. So, we are ready. All the obstacles have been removed.”

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Lanre Shittu assembly plant for trucks, pickups excites NADDC DG

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Lanre Shittu assembly plant for trucks, pickups excites NADDC DG

Director General of National Automotive Design And Development Council, Mr. Joseph Osanipin, has expressed satisfaction with the state of Lanre Shittu auto assembly plant and the volume of work being carried out there.

He specifically commended the company for focusing on the assembling of commercial vehicles, especially trucks and pickups as well as the compressed natural gas (CNG)-powered vehicles.

The DG spoke after inspecting the LSM auto assembly plant in Lagos and was taken through the process of putting the JAC truck components together as well as conversion of LSM pickups to run on CNG.

Osanipin said, “I’m very impressed with what I saw here. Lanre Shittu Motors has picked where its strength is – the pickups and trucks.

“I’m also impressed about their human capital development. We have seen the training facility and capacity. We also saw the spare parts. It means they are ready to support their vehicles with sufficient parts when the need arises.

“I have seen capacity and ability to meet the demand of the market. What we have seen here, I’m not too surprised because Lanre Shittu Motors has been there over the years.”

About 95 per cent of the workers engaged at both truck and pickup sections of the plant are Nigerians.

The DG spoke on the readiness of industry for the CNG-powered vehicles, saying, “From my assessment of what the LSM is doing, it means the assemblers are ready for the CNG vehicle initiative.”

He urged Nigerians to embrace the initiative, noting that it is cost-effective.

“Again, looking at the safety measures being put in place here at LSM, it shows we are ready for CNG. The next set of conversion to be done here will be the trucks,” he said.

Managing Director of Lanre Shittu Motors, Mr. Taiwo Shittu, said the company had delivered some CNG-powered mass transit buses for airport shuttle.

He disclosed that LSM could do six units daily, adding that the firm saw the huge business in the CNG-powered vehicles shortly after the removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government and went straight into it.

He said, “We know from our knowledge of automobile – this is our 43 years in the industry – that once the fuel subsidy is removed, the next option is the CNG. So we went straight into CNG vehicles.

“As we speak, we are converting our vehicles to run on CNG. We have our CNG conversion kits on the ground. We have mass transit buses already at the airports for shuttle, assembled here in Nigeria.

“Another set of CNG mass transit buses have arrived at the seaport and being cleared. This will be for commercial operation. And it will reduce operation cost by twenty-five per cent.

Shittu said LSM placed premium on after-sale support, with over N2 billion worth of spare parts in its store.

“For any vehicle or auto brand to survive in Nigeria, after-sale support is very important.

“We have been sole distributor in Nigeria for many brands including MAN and JAC. Having passed through this stage, we understand that no vehicle brand can make any headway in the country without adequate parts.

“A lot of made-in-Nigeria vehicles failed in the past because the handlers did not realise that without sufficient spare parts, they cannot survive” he said.

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Fund auto credit scheme with import duty, stakeholders tell FG

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Fund auto credit scheme with import duty, stakeholders tell FG

Key operators in the automotive industry are demanding the creation of vehicle credit scheme using import levies collected on automobiles.
They also called on President Bola Tinubu to sign into law the National Auto Industry Development Plan (NAIDP) bill to give local and foreign investors more confidence in the sector.
These are parts of their resolutions after a recent Nigeria auto industry summit held in Lagos as contained in a communique.
The event was organised in Lagos by the Nigeria Auto Journalists Association in collaboration with the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC).

The Federal Government had in the past made efforts to set an auto finance scheme but they were aborted somehow.

For instance, a South African bank was to spearhead the project at a time but it backed out midway.

Some three Nigerian banks were mentioned in connection with the next phase under Aliyu Jelani as NADDC DG but the effort did not materialise, making it difficult to buy new vehicles with low-interest loans.
“The proceeds of the ‘levy’ charged on the importation of passenger vehicles should be used for its purpose, which is the development of the automotive industry, ‘especially in the area of Vehicle Credit Scheme’, the communique stated .
The communique, which was delivered to the Presidency and the National Assembly on Monday, July 8th, 2024.
also noted that the NAIDP was key to the development of the nation’s economy.
They therefore urged the President to sign it into law in order to provoke OEMs’ confidence in the nation’s economy and erase their fears of policy summersault.
In the 19-paragraph communiqué made available to journalists on Thursday, prominent auto firms, among other medium-term measures, stressed that while passing the NAIDP, a provision backing compulsory patronage of locally assembled/manufactured vehicles by all government functionaries, establishments, agencies and parastatals must be re-enacted and implemented.
The stakeholders charged the government at all levels to patronise only vehicles made or assembled in Nigeria, as a way of leading by example, saving foreign exchange and securing jobs.
In the same vein, they charged the National Assembly to review the zero differentials between import of Fully Built Up (FBU) and Completely Knocked Down (CKD) commercial vehicles, which presently stands at 10 per cent.
On what they described as an unclear process utilized in the recent launch and allocation of 1000 units of CNG vehicles to local assemblers, the stakeholders asked the National Assembly to, when passing the NAIDP, incorporate a provision that mandates the Federal Government to give a fair chance for all existing auto assemblers and manufacturers to partake in supplies of CNG vehicles to the government
The communique read also read in part, “The government must simplify the CNG process by harmonizing the workings of the Federal Ministry of Finance and that of the Nigeria Customs Service on the issue of gazetted duty free allowance on CNG equipment.
“The government must ensure that all imported used vehicles, including salvaged ones, must be accompanied by certificates of integrity by originating countries.
“The government should tackle inadequate access to finance through its fiscal and monetary policies; take a second look at interest rates offered by Nigerian banks which are significantly higher compared to other countries.”
As a long term measure, the stakeholders urged the Federal Government to aggressively incentivize CKD assembly through contract manufacturing to leverage the nation’s existing automotive assembly capacities and expeditiously restart the automotive industry from its heights in the 1980s.
“The government,” they stated further, “should develop and implement an automotive raw materials and component manufacturing master plan.”
Also stated in the communiqué is a call on the government to revive tyre, battery, and glass manufacturing as a precursor to revamping local manufacture of: welded parts (exhaust system, seat frames); electrical parts (batteries, trafficators, wiring harness); plastic and rubber parts (tyres, tubes, fan blades, seat foam, oil seals, hoses, radiator grills, etc); radiator, cables, filters, brake pads/linings, windscreens, side glasses, fibre-glass parts, paints; rubber products (tyres) and thereafter, other Tier 2 and aftermarket components.
The summit was attended by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Doris Uzoka-Anite, Director General of NADDC, Mr. Joseph Osanipin and representatives of key auto industry stakeholders, the Nigeria Automotive Manufacturers Association (NAMA), Automotive Local Component Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (ALCMAN), Lagos State government and Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs service, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi.

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NADDC DG speaks on transiting from SKD to CKD as he tours more auto plants

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NADDC DG speaks on transiting from SKD to CKD as he tours more auto plants

 

Director General of National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), Mr. Joseph Osanipin, has visited more automobile plants located in the Lagos axis, where he hinted about moving from Semi-Knocked Down (SKD) to Completely-Knocked Down (CKD) production.

This came after a successful visit to Lanre Shittu Motors on Monday, where he kick-started a one-week long tour of auto assembly plants in Lagos axis.

On Tuesday, the DG and his team including the Director in charge of Policy and Planning, Mr. Sani Musa, visited Mikano Motors, Proforce, Simba, Nord and CIG Motors.

On Wednesday, he visited AutoMaster and Jet System.

The DG restated the council’s commitment to move the Nigeria auto industry from SKD to CKD production capacity as soon as possible.

He said, “At NADDC, our ambition is to increase the local components of every vehicle that is coming out from the assembly plants.

“Basically, our intention is to move from SKD to CKD in the next three to four years.”

According to him, the facilities have enough capacity in terms of installed capacity and level of operation even beyond the perception of the public.

“The essence of this tour is to establish where we are, what is our reality, where are we in moving from SKD to CKD?

“And we have seen what we need to do; those we need to talk to, and the kind of synergy we need to have with other stakeholders to move ahead,” he said.

To achieve CKD production capacity in the auto industry, the DG said, ”We need to do backward integration and meet the components manufacturers and start bringing them up, because it is a complete ecosystem and no one can do it alone.”

He commended the readiness of the assembly plants to embrace CNG- production as some of the automakers were already producing either direct CNG-powered vehicles or converting to CNG.

The managing directors/CEOs of the auto firms expressed their profound gratitude for the efforts of the NADDC DG in propelling the local automotive industry, adding that with proper regulations and consistent enabling environment, the auto manufacturers could achieve CKD in no distant time.

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