The Association of Tailors and Fashion Designers (ATFAD), the umbrella body for garment makers in the Nigerian state of Abia, has appealed to the state government to provide land for the establishment of a garment cluster in the city of Aba.
According to the ATFAD, establishment of a garment cluster in the city would facilitate a favorable environment for the sector, which is mainly comprised of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), reports Nigerian newspaper Business Day.
ATFAD president Godwin Iheme, while inaugurating the regional office of ATFAD in Aba city, said the association has already applied for land and hoped that the state government would respond positively.
Mr. Iheme applauded the garment makers and tailors of the state for their camaraderie disposition and also urged the leaders to ensure that they maintain the unity that currently prevails amongst tailors and garment manufacturers in order to increase production of apparel in the state.
The ATFAD official also urged the Federal Government to ban imports of finished garments in the country, stating that locally made products, although superior to most imported products, face unfair competition due to high production costs.
In order to compete in international markets, the local producers need to increase productivity for which they require constant power supply and necessary infrastructure, hence, the Nigerian Government should continue its quest to ensure power supply in the country, he added.
According to the ATFAD president, epileptic power supply and taxes were some of the major challenges faced by the manufacturing sector of the country. The ATFAD official urged the Government to support the manufacturing sector, as it holds the key to industrial development in the country.