By Emmanuella Anokam
Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), says Shoprite, South African Retailer is a strategic investment playing vital role in connecting Nigerian produce and products to national and regional value chains.
NIPC Executive Secretary, Yewande Sadiku, disclosed this at a Webinar held by NIPC management team with Journalists on Thursday in Abuja.
Sadiku noted that the announcement by the South African retail shop did not imply the closure of Shoprite stores in Nigeria, although the full details have not been provided.
“But we understand that the structure of the planned transaction will give an opportunity for Nigerian investors to take up a controlling interest in the business entity.
Sadiku, further said that in Nigeria investments, retail distribution and related sectors were necessary for Nigeria to reach her investment ambition.
She explained that retail value chain was useful for providing deeper market access for producers of local products and connecting Nigerian businesses to not only national value chain, but regional.
“The retail market is a material driver for the growth of the Nigerian economy and accounts for 16 per cent of our Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
“From the work we do in NIPC, we know that Shoprite, which operates 25 outlets in 11 states and FCT are responsible for direct and indirect employment of about 4,500 people whom vast majority are Nigerians,’’ she said.
She further said in reality, the work Shoprite offered provided market access to over 500 Nigerian farmers and small businesses helping many of them to get local produce to millions of Nigerian consumers.
According to her, the commission remains committed in the context of our mandate. We have intervened for Shoprite several times and over the last two years in engagement with other government agencies.
“I believe that government commitment in progressively improving business environment for domestic and foreign investors will remain,’’the executive secretary said.