Out of the many investments recorded in Nigeria’s manufacturing sector in 2017, the Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCGs) and the vehicle assembly sub-sectors lead the pack.
These investments came in the form of factory expansion, opening of new plants and acquisition of land, machinery and vehicles.
Collins Dictionary defines FMCGs as inexpensive products that people usually buy on a regular basis, such as supermarket foods or toiletries.
FMCGs which invested in the Nigerian economy in 2017 included Procter & Gamble (P&G), FrieslandCampina WAMCO, Edo State Fertilizer Plant, Kellogg’s, Unilever, and FoodPro.
In June last year, P&G, largest American non-oil investor in Nigeria, commissioned a new production line for its Always brand in Agbara, Ogun State, south-west Nigeria.
Also in June, dairy maker FrieslandCampina WAMCO commissioned a milk collection plant in Saki, Oyo State, with a capacity to hold 12,000 litres of raw milk daily and 4.32 million litres annually.
That was FrieslandCampina WAMCO’s fifth milk collection plant in Oyo and will see over 10,000 small-holder farmers participate in the process and earn good income, said the company.
In August, Dangote Group penned a $450 million deal with Niger State for the establishment of fully integrated sugar complex.
“The integrated sugar mills will have the capacity to produce 160,000MT of raw sugar. We are developing a sugar backward integration plan through the production of 1.5 metric tonnes per annum in ten years in Nasarawa, Adamawa, Kogi, Kwara, Taraba and Niger states respectively,” said Abdullahi Sule, group managing director of Dangote Sugar Plc, on August 24.
On August 30, vice president Yemi Osinbajo commissioned a 60,000 metric tonnes per annum Edo State Fertilizer Plant in Auchi, Edo State./
In September, Olam International commissioned $150 million integrated feed mill, breeding and hatchery farm in Kaduna State.
The plant by the Singapore-based Olam is the largest integrated feed mill in the country, with capacity to employ 8,000 Nigerians directly and indirectly, including 200 veterinary doctors and a storage facility of 50,000 metric tonnes estimated to sell 72,000,000 eggs and 52,600,000 day old chicks.
Moreover, Unilever Nigeria opened its Blue Band factory at Agbara Industrial Estate, Ogun State, which was the latest addition to investments the company has made in Nigeria.
In late November, FoodPro Limited commissioned its cashew processing factory in Ilorin, Kwara State.
“Through domestic processing of raw cashew nuts, we have created more than 400 direct jobs and several thousand indirect jobs for farmers, vendors, suppliers and artisans who form the heartbeat of FoodPro’s value chain. With 90 percent of FoodPro’s employees being women, we are humbled by the role we play in impacting communities and improving economic and social development conditions in our host community,” Ayo Olajiga, co-founder/CEO of FoodPro Limited, said.
Kellogg’s, an American multinational food manufacturing company, equally set up a joint venture with the African arm of Singapore’s Tolaram Group to bolster its breakfast and snack food offerings in West Africa in 2015.
For vehicle assembly, Coscharis Group and Honda opened new assembly plants in Lagos and Ogun respectively.
Coscharis’ Ford Assembly Plant, located in Lekki part of Lagos, has the capacity to churn out 10,000 to 20,000 cars annually.
“It has been a long wait from when we first announced in November 2015 that we had commenced physical structuring of the new plant in Lagos,” Cosmas Maduka, president/CEO of Coascharis Group, told journalists at a press conference, which took place inside the assembly hall, in Lagos last October.
“At the moment, our focus at the plant is to rollout the Ford Ranger, which is a multipurpose mini-truck that serves well for both work and leisure. As you are all aware, Ford has a global standard for all of its products including the Ranger. Therefore, Ford’s certification of our facility and output are confirmations that every single Ranger that rolls out of this plant is indeed ‘Built Ford Tough’ from which we’ve rolled out over 600 units from this facility since we started operation; some of which are on display,” Maduka said.
In December, Japanese car maker Honda Automobile Western Africa Limited, a member of the Honda Motor Corporation Limited, began assembly and production of 1,000 units of hi-tech Honda automobiles at its 38-year old assembly plant located in Ota, Ado-Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State.
Apart from FMCGs and vehicle assembly firms, BUA, cement and foods maker, in August, commissioned its second cement plant located at Obu, Okpella, Edo State. BUA has invested $2 billion dollars in the Nigerian cement industry with capacities in excess of over 8 million tons per annum within nine years of existence.
Manufacturers were hard hit by dollar crunch in 2016, resulting from a combination of global oil price slump and militancy in the Niger Delta that cut production targets. But the situation got better by the second half of 2017 after militants announced ceasefire and the central bank created the Investors and Exporters (I&E) windows, making more dollars available for the importation of inputs, machinery and spare parts. This consequently opened doors for a flurry of new investments in the Nigerian economy.