From inception there have been goods locally processed or manufactured in Nigeria. However, these goods were given recognition in the early 60’s when Aba based local entrepreneurs started imitating and producing shoes that could be compared with imported ones. It is also on record that prior to this breakthrough in entrepreneurship there has been resounding success. Some of which are;
Micro industries was that of “made-in-Aba” products in early60s; little wonder then inferior and substandard goods of the 60s were tagged “Abamade goods”. It was so until the 70s when the indigenization/enterprises promotion decree of 1972 was promulgated.
This decree saw Nigerians at the helm of affairs controlling multinational companies. These companies were producing goods that cannot be compared with that of their parent companies. Consumers now saw the needs to differentiate products, thus the name “made-in-Nigeria” goods’ came into being. As at today, all goods manufactured or processed in Nigeria are classified as “made-in-Nigeria” goods.
Therefore it is pertinent to ask these questions;
1. What is responsible for this attitude of Nigerians towards goods made in the country?
2. How do consumers in Nigeria evaluate the various attributes of domestic textile products relative to similar products of foreign origin?
3. Are there significant differences between past and present evaluations of made in Nigeria textile goods?
4. What is the extent of consumer familiarity with made-in-Nigeria textile brands?
5. What is the extent of consumer satisfaction with made-in-Nigeria brands?
According to recent studies, Made-in-Nigeria products can be classified into three groups namely:
(a) Goods transplanted into Nigeria.
(b) Goods adapted for Nigeria. Examples are Textiles and readymade garments.
(c) Indigenous products. Examples include native drinks, agricultural products and Akwete cloth.
Nigerian business community must recognize:
1. To be truly competitive in today’s business world, a company must Establish and/or maintain international standards.
2. This is very important in the areas of Quality of products and services and Quality of men and materials.
As we are aware, quality is a relative term and the basis for comparison of made in-Nigeria goods with imported goods should be, therefore, in relation to the degree of conformity of either goods with the relevant Nigerian industrial standards.
There is no denying the fact that in the recent past, ignorance and ego contributed to preference of imported goods to made-in-Nigeria goods by Nigerian consumers. During this era, most Nigerian importers colluded with some foreign exporters and flooded the markets with substandard goods to the detriment of the economy. However, the situation is different.
Quality awareness and bringing order or sanity in the importation business are assured today. Our economy should be better for this. With the increasing awareness on quality issues by consumers coupled with the curbing of activities of the economic canker worms, the stage is set for Nigerian business to effectively implement quality tools for better performance of their products in relation to imported goods. Better performance of goods is synonymous with acquiring competitive advantages.
In due sense some of the conclusions drawn from various findings as to the deteriorating state of our textile industries are;
1. The quality of made in Nigeria textile is lower than that of foreign textiles.
2. The colour and design of made in Nigeria textile could be said to compete favorably with that of foreign textiles.
3. The current fashion style that promotes and encourages traditional African style influenced the purchase of made in Nigeria textile positively.
4 Consumers perceived the quality of made in Nigerian textiles as being relatively lower and this discouraged their purchase of made in Nigeria textile to a large extent.