To demonstrate the Federal Government’s dedication to nurturing the manufacturing sector’s expansion in Nigeria, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr Doris Nkiruka Uzoka-Anite, recently visited the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) Limited.
During the visit, she highlighted the Federal Government’s proactive efforts to create an enabling environment that would support and accelerate the growth of manufacturing enterprises in the country.
The minister, who was welcomed by the Managing Director, Goran Sladic, Non-Executive Director, ‘Laolu Akinkugbe and other members of the management team of NBC Limited was led on a tour of the company’s 110,000 m² facility, which is currently adjudged the largest bottling plant in Africa.
Highlighting the importance of the real sector to the sustainable development of the Nigerian economy, the minister engaged the NBC team on pertinent issues shaping the landscape of manufacturing in the country.
Speaking, the minister said: “We are most delighted to be at NBC today and recognize its rich history in Nigeria which spans over 70 years. Our visit today is in line with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s commitment to promote industrialization in the country.
“We are committed to ensuring we create the enabling environment for businesses to thrive and grow. We are passionate about reducing poverty and ensuring that we support economic growth with the appropriate fiscal policies.”
She further reiterated her ministry’s commitment to open dialogue and collaborative efforts with key players in the private sector to address challenges and explore growth opportunities – stressing the need to drive economic prosperity through public-private sector partnership.
Responding, Sladic, stated: “We are thrilled at the opportunity to host the minister and appreciate the government’s commitment to engaging with industry stakeholders. We are encouraged by the discussions we had with the minister and her team today and believe that it is a significant step towards building a more resilient and sustainable industry, and we are eager to contribute to the ongoing dialogues and initiatives.
“This past decade has been a testament to our unwavering dedication to placing consumers at the core of our operations. Within the last decade, the Coke system has made a substantial investment of $1.32 billion, enhancing our operational capacity, revolutionizing our supply chain infrastructure and providing extensive training to our workforce.”
Speaking further, he said: “Our commitment has extended beyond our products to encompass a wide range of community initiatives, focusing on empowering women and youth, championing water stewardship, and promoting environmental sustainability and efficient waste management. Marking our 70th anniversary, we reinforced our pledge to Nigeria with a €1 million donation aimed at driving impactful social programs across eight states.”
He affirmed NBC’s ongoing commitment to invest in its Nigerian operations and expressed the hope that favourable business conditions would bolster the company’s capacity and facilitate further investments in the country and beyond.
PHOTO CAPTION FOR NBC STORY
Director, Public Affairs, Communications and Sustainability, Coca-Cola Nigeria, Nwamaka Onyemelukwe (left); Member, Board of Directors, Nigerian Bottling Company, Olaolu Akinkugbe; Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Doris Nkiruka Uzoka-Anite; Managing Director, Nigerian Bottling Company, Goran Sladic and Director, Corporate Affairs and Sustainability, Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC), Oluwasoromidayo George, during the Minister’s visit to NBC’s Ikeja plant in Lagos recently.