The Jamaican High Commissioner to Nigeria, Esmond Reid, says his country was planning to source for vehicles from Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing (IVM) in Nigeria.
Mr Reid, in the company of Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, made this known during a facility tour of IVM plant in Nnewi, Anambra State 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 in Jamaica to look at the timeline and determine the negotiations and engagements and when we will start the business of sourcing the vehicles”.
The high commissioner described IVM plant 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, Mr Onyeama called for strict enforcement of the Presidential Executive Order mandating government officials to buy and use Nigeria.
“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 US.”
“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, the Chairman of IVM, Innocent Chukwuma, appreciated the Federal Government for supporting manufacturing companies in the country.
Mr Chukwuma urged Nigerians to always patronise his products, assuring them of quality and durable vehicles.
The South-East President, Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mine and Agriculture, Honfery Nkeonadi, lauded IVM for making Africans proud with innovative products.