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Knowledge Economy: Nigerian publishers, printers urge Government on improved facilities, enabling environment

*Nigerian publishers and printers have pushed for availability of grants and facilities for the $3 billion yearly revenue books industry to further boost the West African country’s economy

Gbenga Kayode | ConsumerConnect

In a proactive move to further enhance the fortune of the subsector and evolve a knowledge-based economy, the Nigerian publishers and other stakeholders in the printing industry have urged the Federal Government to provide an enabling business environment to improve local production of paper and ensure it thrives in the country.

ConsumerConnect learnt the publishers’ said the idea would help them to develop the Nigeria Printing and Publishing sector of the economy.

Gbadega Adedapo, CEO of Accessible Publishers Limited

The industry stakeholders stated this at the maiden edition of the International Paper, Publishing and Printing Expo, organised by DCS Integrated Media Limited, in conjunction with Nigeria International Print Expo (NIPEX), the International Print on Textile Expo (IPONTEX), and Marketing and Promotional Products Expo (MAPPEX) in Lagos.

The theme of the expo was, ‘Face to Face Marketing in a Visual Age,’ which brought together stakeholders in the print industry.

They stated the “diversification of the economy is critical to creating wealth and employment.

According to them, the printing and publishing industry is up to the task, if given the necessary support.

The publishers and printers also pushed for availability of grants and facilities for the $3 billion yearly revenue book industry to further boost the struggling economy.

Gbadega Adedapo, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Accessible Publishers Limited, said the printing and publishing industries had a significant impact on the economy of the country as it contributes immensely to the employment of labour.

Adedapo, who doubles as Chairman, Reproduction Rights Society of Nigeria (REPRONIG), presented a paper titled: “Building Synergy Between Printers and Publishers for Improved Local Production in Nigeria.”

He noted that the industry has many challenges crippling it, which include, brain drain, high cost of production, lack of technical, financial and human capital, piracy issues, high foreign exchange, among others.

Adedapo further said that ‘for the industry to thrive in the country, there must be implementation of functional National Book Policy and new Copyright Act, stronger collaboration among players, investment in modern printing technology and equipment, quality control measures and a culture of inclusivity.

The company executive further charged publishers and printers to come together and ensure government resuscitates the moribund paper mills, as well as reduced tariffs and duty on printing materials such as paper, ink, plate, and film, among others.

Adedapo said as developed nations adopt digital innovations to modify their business models in the area of printing and publishing, it is important for Nigeria to take advantage of globalisation to standardise its processes, build capacity and improve its facilities to compete favourably in the same global market.

Speaking at the event, Guo Pengwen, Chairman of Trade Promotion Board Consular General of China,  said printing and publishing in Nigeria were facing challenges from digital technology to paper production and publishing.

China, he stated, is upgrading its industry by digitalisation and new technology equipment.

In his contribution on the relationship between Nigeria and China, Pengwen said the Asian country believed in mobility and advancement, and is ready to supply funds or partner whichever country is ready to journey the economic advancement race with China.

Speaking earlier, Mr. Tunde Obokhai, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, DCS Integrated Media Limited, said the expo was aimed at creating a platform for networking, knowledge sharing, collaboration and up-skilling in print business that will benefit everyone involved.

It was a gradual move to bring into reality the vision of having a one-stop print expo in the Nigerian printing industry, just like the famous drupa fair in Germany and IPEX fair in the United Kingdom, said he.

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