Use Nigerian Local Talents– ARCON DG Urges

In a sharp comparative analysis of the Nigerian creative industry with other countries in Africa, Nigeria is losing a whooping sum of 100 billion naira annually on imported advertisment through foreign production.

This was revealed by the Director General of Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria (ARCON), Dr. Olalekan Fadolapo, who featured on AIT breakfast programme recently, while also responding to the litigation by the Advertisers’ Association of Nigeria (ADVAN).

Lamenting the situation, Dr. Fadolapo noted that Nigeria has over two hundred million population and there is nothing that cannot be found here in terms of talents. While revealing his recent meeting with filmmaker and TV producer, Femi Odungbemi and Yinka Oguniyi, the ARCON DG said that after their analysis, they discovered that Nigeria loses over 100 billion naira annually on imported advertisement through foreign production.

“In an economy where you are doing your business, the people in that economy must take benefit. What do we have, if you check statistics, Kenya’s advertising market is three times bigger than Nigeria. South Africa is six times bigger than Nigeria. In terms of GDP, Nigeria is far ahead. It is the biggest economy in the entire Africa. What happens to our village? It takes a whole village to make an advert . So, when you want to do your advert, you go to south Africa, you spend one billion naira and come back with a flash drive after investing into another country’s economy.

“You now come back with flash drive and give our TV stations to run, saying they should plug and play. This is the same flash drive you give to CNN and pre-pay them. That’s why we say no, you can’t continue to rip us off in our economy,” he said.

Fadolapo argued that advertising content should be produced in Nigeria, saying everything needed to do quality production is in Nigeria.

“We have models, voice over artists and everything to give quality production. We are a global market and in every market, there are specifics. You can’t go to Dubai and bring an American as a model in their economy because they have a cultural issue. We are saying, if you are making your profit in Nigeria, use Nigeria local talents. We did not say don’t use white or yellow,” he concluded.

The creative industry, which is one of the economic mainstays of some countries in Africa, has become a major source of concern in Nigeria. Nigerian talents are constantly jettisoned for their foreign counterparts when it comes to production of advertising content, and this is believed to have negatively impacted the economy.

According to a media guru, Ronan Redmond, Commercial Director, TVC Communications, Nigerian advertising market is in the region of one billion USD compared to what it is in other African countries like South Africa and Kenya. In South Africa, the advertising market as at 2019 is estimated at about 2.05 billion US dollars.

This disturbing narrative in the Nigerian creative industry is said to have been largely attributed to the sheer neglect of an array of talents and potentials that abound in the country.

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