By Emeka Ejere
As part of efforts to prevent exportation of substandard and falsified products to Nigeria, the National Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) says it is partnering with Benin Republic’s business community.
NAFDAC’s Director General, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, made this known at a Business Forum held in Cotonou in a statement made available to journalists.
The forum was also attended by the Nigerian Ambassador to Benin Republic, Mr. Kayode Oguntuase.
Adeyeye highlighted NAFDAC’s processes and registration requirements for certification of products by the agency.
She said that NAFDAC’s guidelines for registration would be translated into French language in order to promote Federal Government’s ease of doing business with Benin Republic and other francophone countries.
She said that the business forum became necessary as part of the organisation’s efforts to ensure that drugs, food and cosmetics products billed for export to Nigeria met required standards.
The NAFDAC boss noted that with the existence of ECOWAS treaties governing trade and investment across West Africa, discussions at the forum would makes it easier to do business with neighbouring countries.
She called for harmonisation of products registration process across Africa to standardise product quality on the continent, adding that such meetings were necessary to promote trade between West African nations and Africa as a whole.
Responding, Mr Houssou Epiphone, the Head of the food and drug regulatory body in Benin Republic urged the D-G of NAFDAC to “do everything possible to set up the machinery that will facilitate trade between Benin and Nigeria’’.
Epiphone noted the difficulties encountered by his country’s businessmen during registration process, suggested some initiatives, including signing of MOU with NAFDAC to ease registration of products and create framework for further meetings.
Mr Soule Yacoubou, the Vice President of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Benin Republic, led a strong representation of businessmen and women to the forum.