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Manufacturers Lay Off Workers, Project More Job Losses 

(News investigators) The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria has said that the Current Employment Condition (rate of employment) declined from 51.3 points in the last quarter of 2022 to 50.7 points in the first quarter of 2023, projecting the unemployment crisis in the real sector.

In its recently released Manufacturers CEOs Confidence Index report, the association projected that employment conditions would further decline to 47.8 points in the succeeding months.

The report is a quarterly research and advocacy publication of the association, which measures changes in the pulse of operators and trends in the manufacturing sector on a quarterly basis.

According to the report, the aggregate Index Score of MCCI declined to 54.1 points in the first quarter of 2023.

It noted that employment decisions by manufacturers had been ‘so difficult’ due to the unpredictability and difficulty in the macroeconomic environment.

It read partly, “The issues of acute shortage of forex and depreciation in naira value, cost of energy and limited supply of electricity, speculation about the effect of redesigning of naira, the National elections and the lingering adverse effect of Russian-Ukrainian war were major concerns of manufacturers in the quarter.”

The President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Francis Meshioye, expressed worry that manufacturers were beginning to downsize, while others were divesting away from Nigeria.

According to him, the recent increase in the Monetary Policy Rate, coupled with the forex crisis that trailed the floating of the naira, had made life increasingly hard for manufacturers.

He said, “We plead with the government to look at the manufacturing sector as a sector that requires special attention because the success of the manufacturing sector will boost economic growth tremendously. It will boost the economy because we will be able to produce much more goods. We will be able to spend less on importation of goods.

“This will relieve us of the foreign exchange that we are looking for. The real sector is suffering a lot. Companies are reducing their size. Some are divesting from Nigeria. If this continues, we will become an endangered sector.” CULLED THE PUNCH

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