Real economic growth only comes from increase in quality and quantity of factors of production.
Permit me to rephrase “real technological growth of a country can only come from the increase in quality and quantity of technological production/products achieved by the country. This is not the case of Nigeria.
According to Vanguard Nigeria, Nigeria spends a whooping sum of N868 billion ($2.8bn) annually on importation of hardware and software products and it does not even begin to meet up our technological needs to keep our manufacturing industry performing at optimum. This information only shines more light on the non-existence of a production industry in terms of technological hardware in the country.
Take for instance the power holding company in Nigeria. They have hardware which help facilitate their operations and the power supply to the country. This hardware as we know is imported. Now a problem comes up, a part of this machine/hardware or the hardware as a whole is faulty or damaged and needs to replaced. Considering that we do not produce this hardware within our shores we have to import again, hence a manufacturing gap in our economy in terms of hardware.
Here are a few threats posed by the hardware gap in the Nigerian tech industry:
- Delay in operations: if this hardware needed to continue operations as normal were to be produced within the country, it will take shorter time to acquire this product which in turn enables a faster recovery period i.e. the problem is solved faster and operations can resume in quicker time compared to the tedious and time consuming process it will take to import it.
- High cost: importing any product into a country is always more expensive than acquiring one within that same country. There are a lot of payments made to clear the product before it is acquired. Other expenses incurred could be shipping fees. Hence the cost of acquiring the necessary hardware is expensive considering it needs to be imported.
- Lack of properly trained staff: the hardware was manufactured outside Nigeria and the professionals who can handle the repair and operation of this hardware properly are most likely to be foreigners. Imagine what it would require to get the foreign professional to achieve the objective.
Note: the influence of technology in the manufacturing industries cannot be overlooked but when this technology is handled wrongly it can adversely affect the industry thus the need for highly skilled professionals to manipulate these hardware.
A proposed solution.
Saving and discovery are the two basic ways to improve or increase the factors of production. Saving occurs when present consumption is delayed and those resources are used to enable capital investment. Discovery can include technique or process discovery, technological discovery or resource discovery. (Sean Ross)
It may seem a long shot, but it’s a start. Nigeria needs to start producing hardware products within our shores (products of quality and reliability). It will no doubt improve our economy. The sooner we start developing these products the quicker we get to a revolutionary era in our manufacturing industries. Instead of always looking to import, why don’t we invest in teaching and training our own citizens to be able to create, manage and manipulate such technologies. Things will not change immediately but in the foreseeable future we will eat the fruits of such labour.
Here are some benefits of producing our hardware technology within our shores:
- With less cost we will be able to achieve same goals if not even more in quicker time in various industries.
- Finding worthy professionals to achieve repairs and replacements will no longer be such a hectic task.
- Goods and services can be offered to the consumers at lower rates at the same time maximising profits. (It’s a win for all parties involved).
- More employment opportunities.
- This gives us variety of products with which we can trade globally and get more active on the global market thereby increasing our value.
We the citizens of the federal republic of Nigeria can play our little part in encouraging production within our shores. We can achieve this by simply not shying away from made in Nigeria products. The more our patronage the more encouragement to continue production by our manufacturing industries.