Over the past decade, Nigeria has witnessed the unfortunate departure of numerous manufacturing companies from its shores, a consequence of the increasingly unfavourable business environment and policies.
These enterprises have been grappling with a myriad of challenges, including foreign exchange scarcity, erratic power supply, port congestion, excessive taxation, security concerns, inadequate infrastructure, and persistent inflation, which have left an adverse impact on both the Nigerian population and business ventures. Furthermore, the high energy costs, dwindling industrial output, and reduced product demand have only exacerbated the challenges faced by manufacturers in Nigeria.
Among Businesses in Nigeria and the companies that have regrettably exited the sector over the past ten years are:
1. *Louis Carter Industries*:
In 2017, this longstanding plastic manufacturer, situated in Nnewi, Anambra, ceased its operations after almost three decades in business. The company, known for producing plastic items like gallons and basins, succumbed to escalating production costs, foreign exchange constraints, policy uncertainties, and soaring energy expenses.
2. *Moak Enterprises*:
Moak Enterprises, a prominent bottled/sachet water company based in Sango-Ota, Ogun State, met its demise in 2021. Renowned for its ‘Meridian Waters brand, it produced copious amounts of sachet water monthly, serving wholesalers and retailers. The foreign exchange crisis and the resultant increase in raw material costs played a significant role in its closure.
3. *Procter & Gamble (P&G)*:
P&G celebrated as a significant non-oil investment by the Nigerian government, ceased production in Agbara, Ogun State, in 2018. High import duties, surging energy expenses, and government-imposed tariffs and foreign exchange constraints led to the company’s withdrawal.
4. *Tower Aluminium*:
Established in Nigeria in 1959, Tower Aluminium supplied aluminium products like pots, plates, spoons, and roofing sheets to households across the country and West Africa. Unfortunately, it had to halt operations in 2020.
5. *GlaxoSmithKline Nigeria*:
GSK decided to discontinue its drug production plant in Agbara, Ogun State, in 2021 due to unsustainable manufacturing costs. The company shifted to contract manufacturing arrangements with Fidson Healthcare, another local manufacturer.
6. *Mayor Biscuits Company Limited*:
Mayor Biscuits Company Limited (MABISCO), a prominent indigenous biscuits company in Ogun State, decided to close its doors and put its multi-million-dollar biscuits plant up for sale, opting to focus on its core competencies.
7. *Technoflex Company Limited*:
A player in the industrial plastic and foam sub-sector, Technoflex ceased operations in 2017 due to escalating production costs.
8. *Evans Medicals*:
Once one of the country’s largest pharmaceutical companies, Evans Medicals faced overwhelming debt. Despite earlier investments in upgrading its production facilities, a court order in 2017 led to the takeover of the company’s assets by First Bank and the now-defunct Skye Bank, marking the end of Evans’ aspirations.
9. *Multi-Trex Integrated Foods Plc*:
Multi-Trex experienced optimal performance until funding issues emerged. Forced to borrow from the now-defunct Skye Bank to stay afloat, this decision ultimately proved detrimental. The Asset Management Corporation Organization of Nigeria took control of the business, resulting in a significant decline in productivity.
10. *Other Affected Companies*:
Numerous other companies, including Surest Foam Limited, Mufex, Framan Industries, Deli Foods, Stone Industries, and MZM Continental, among others, faced comparable challenges, forcing them to cease their operations in Nigeria.
These departures serve as a stark reminder of the urgent need for policy reforms and improved conditions for businesses in Nigeria to prevent further economic setbacks.