Nigeria Losing Out On $47.7bn Ceramics Market
Nigeria is losing out on the $47.7 billion ceramics market globally a professor of ceramics, Patrick Oaikhiman has said. He spoke in an interview in Lagos.
He lamented the neglect of the sector and its impact on the economy, noting that the high level of unemployment would have been reduced if the sector was attended to before now. He called on the government to retool the economy in order to participate effectively in the global ceramics economy which he said have the capacity to create 5 million direct jobs in Nigeria.
He expressed concerns about the challenges in the sector locally, noting that the Chinese are dominant in the sector; he said the government has shown that it is not really interested in the growth of the mineral sector as a result of her over dependence on oil revenue.
He said: “There is no doubt that the oil sector produces about 90 percent of Nigeria’s export earnings but the emerging trend indicates that the economy has been growing without job creation and poverty reduction as a result of the neglect of the solid mineral sector. The solid minerals sector is disconnected from other tiers and sectors of the economy and thus offer little or no linkage of multiplier effect to the economy as a whole”.
Oaikhinan, a Consultant in Ceramics Technology and President/CEO Epina Technologies Limited argued that the nation’s quest for diversification and huge income inflow from non oil sector may not be realized except the nation taps into the huge potential in ceramics manufacturing.
He maintained his believe that the strengthening of ceramic and solid minerals entrepreneurship in Nigeria is the golden highway to her economic democracy. According to him solid mineral processing industries offer ‘unparalleled perfect storm of business opportunities’ for industrialization, economic development and growth of Nigeria.
He stressed that the solid minerals sector alone has the potential to rebuild the ailing economy, generate employment and wealth for millions of people, build human capital, and exploit new opportunities.
The understanding of the potentials of the solid mineral sector is critical for efficient exploration and exploitation towards promoting sustainable economic development. Oil revenue is nothing near what the exploitation of our natural resources can yield including the multiplier effect, he added.