Beta Glass seeks reinstatement of Export Expansion Grant

Beta Glass Plc, the glass bottle and container maker for the beverage, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries is seeking to reinstate the Export Expansion Grant (EEG) by the Federal Government, to enable it export its products and earn much needed foreign exchange.

At the company’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), which held in Lagos recently, Beta Glass declared a net income of N2bn for the 2015 financial-year despite foreign exchange challenges and economic headwinds.

According to the firm, “The company depends so much on the Export Expansion Grant (EEG), which the government suspended three years ago. With more transparency of the FX policy, we hope the government will look into the EEG so we can start getting certifications that will help us reduce our receivables,” said Abimbola Ogunbanjo, chairman, Beta Glass Plc.

The Federal government introduced the Export Expansion Grant (EEG) in 2006 to assist Nigerian manufacturers export their products and develop the non-oil sector.

The programme increased non-oil revenue to $2.97bn in 2013, from $500m in 2006. However, the programme has since been suspended eight times by the federal government and is currently under review. Industry experts say suspension of the programme is unhelpful for the economy at this time when the federal government needs to support programmes that would boost FX earnings for the non-oil sector.

Industry stakeholders at the AGM meeting called for the reinstatement of the programme as it will help companies like Beta Glass create more jobs, earn Foreign exchange and reduce pressure on the naira.

Beta Glass said that its profits in 2015 financial year fell 16.7% (approximately N400m) to N2bn, from N2.4bn in the preceding year. Revenue also declined by 4% to N16bn, from N16.6bn in 2014 financial year.

“Our business depends on the survival of our key customers. Most of our customers’ revenue declined in the year so also ours,” explained Beta Glass chairman.

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