The Ogun State governor, Dapo Abiodun, has said his administration had released over 10,000 hectares of land to cotton farmers in the state.
While saying the allocation is the highest done by any administration, Abiodun noted that the gesture was aimed at boosting the production of cotton.
He also hinted on partnering with a foreign firm in the local production of cotton in the state.
The firm, according to the governor, has turned around the production of cotton in Togo, thereby making the West African country the second largest producer of cotton in the continent of Africa.
Abiodun, who made this known in his office when he received members of the Tailors Association of Nigeria (TAN), added that the company would be partnering with the state government in the Special Agro Processing Zone.
The governor disclosed that discussions were ongoing on cotton production, declaring that his administration would do all it could to support the industry.
“We are currently partnering with someone who has turned around the production of cotton in one of the West African countries. Within 12 months he has turned Togo to the second largest producer of cotton on the continent. This company is partnering with us in Ogun State in our Special Agro Processing Zone, and we have ongoing discussions on cotton production,” he said.
He described tailors as an integral part of the small medium scale enterprises whose value is huge, adding that the tailoring industry in the country remains untapped.
“You are a value addition to what we are doing in terms of promoting small and medium scale enterprises. You are also a value chain in job creation.
“This is an industry that is performing sub-optimally. The potentials of this industry have remained untapped, particularly from the view of garment manufacturing, which we know is the mainstay of some economies in the world, where all they do is garment production; and that accounts for a large chunk of their gross domestic products.
“This we can confidently achieve in Nigeria because we have a labour force if all we focus on is garment manufacturing of the right quality and standard for export and domestic use,” the governor added.
The national president of the association, Wasiu Jaiyeola Taiwo, while corroborating the governor’s assertion that the tailoring industry is yet to be fully tapped in the country, said a little push on the side of the government for the industry would amount to massive foreign exchange.
Taiwo said the country was losing so much as the value chain is huge, adding that it is only through partnership that a lot of successes could be recorded.
He disclosed that the name of the association was changed from the Nigerian Union of Tailors (NUT) to Tailors Association of Nigeria, adding that the change would further assist the association to break barriers.