The Federal Government has urged the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) to scale up the production of commodities needed to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Mr Adeniyi Adebayo, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, said at a news briefing on Monday in Abuja that manufacturers should increase the production of pharmaceutical and sanitary products.
He said the ministry had taken proactive steps within its mandate area to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the economy.
Adebayo advised Nigerians to avoid panic buying, adulteration and hoarding of sanitary and pharmaceutical products as well as price-hiking. He said the ministry was working closely with stakeholders to reduce the impact of the pandemic on the populace.
He said that the ministry had held series of meetings with MAN and other stakeholders following the outbreak of COVID-19 in the country.
“As a ministry, we are taking proactive measures to address the challenge, potential threats and impact of the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic on the economy.
“Measures necessary to protect and promote the health and safety of industrial workers, their families, communities and the nation at large are being put in place,” he said.
The Minister said part of the measures was to encourage manufacturers to increase the production of essential commodities such as pharmaceutical, consumables, sanitary and hygiene products needed to curtail the virus.
He urged all industries to do their utmost best to sustain ongoing operations in order to avoid reduction or shut down of production activities.
“The management of all industrial sites should also sanitise and educate their workers on how to ensure compliance with COVID-19 guidelines as set by the National Centre for Disease Control,” he said.
He said that the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration was determined to support the industries to sustain their operations.
Mr Mansur Ahmed, MAN President, commended the ministry for its decision to engage the manufacturing sector and other stakeholders in the fight against the disease.
“We have identified measures that can be used to sustain our operations and boosting supply of essential commodities in the face of COVID-19 outbreak,” he said.
Ahmed further said that the association had articulated measures which would be submitted to the federal government for approval to tackle the impact of the pandemic.