The Jamaican High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr Esmond Reid, says plans are underway for his country to start sourcing for vehicles from Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing (IVM), in Nigeria.
Reid, in company of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, made this known during a facility tour of IVM plant in Nnewi, Anambra on Saturday.
He said: ” For us, it is a tremendous opportunity to witness vehicle manufacturing taking place here in Nigeria, which is one of our brothers in the South.
“It is also a chance to be able to discuss commercial opportunities for sourcing vehicles from Nigeria.
“This is my first visit. I will go and consult with my stakeholders back home to look at the timeline and determine the negotiations and engagements and when we will start the business of sourcing the vehicles”.
Assessing the plant, the high commissioner described it as top class, promising to encourage Jamaican citizens to come and see for themselves.
“I congratulate the management of this company and I’m very grateful to the minister for making this visit possible for me. This can become the start of something great,” he said.
Commenting, Onyeama called for strict enforcement of the Presidential Executive Order mandating government officials to buy and use Nigerian manufactured cars.
“I’m very proud. This plant is world class compared to some of the vehicles manufacturing companies I have seen in some other countries. Innoson is doing well.
“Left to me, every government official should be obliged to buy and use a Nigerian manufactured car. There is a Presidential Executive Order that requires government officials to buy Nigeria.
“That order has to be imposed and made mandatory. In France, it is impossible to see a French Government official driving a non French car, same in Japan, Korea, UK and U.S.
“We have to do the same here.This will encourage and support our citizens and demystify technology,” he said.
The minister said he facilitated the visit to IVM when the Jamaican High Commissioner requested to see the impressive things going on in Nigeria.
“We consider these Caribbean countries as our brothers and sisters and we want to increase the level of trade and collaboration among ourselves, ” he said.
In his remarks, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, the Chairman of IVM, appreciated the Federal Government for supporting manufacturing companies in the country.
Chukwuma urged Nigerians to always patronise his products, assuring them of quality and durable vehicles.
Also, Chief Honfery Nkeonadi, the South-East President, Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mine and Agriculture, lauded Innoson for making Africans proud with such innovation.(NAN)