Unilever promises further commitment to sustainable business
As part of its continuous commitment to business sustainability in Nigeria, Unilever’s Global CEO Paul Polman has pledged the company’s commitment to building sustainable and profitable businesses in the country while creating a bright future for Nigerians.
He said this when he visited the Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, at the Presidential Villa in Aso Rock Abuja, accompanied by the Leadership team of the multinational organisation.
Polman mentioned that the company, which has been operating in Nigeria for over 90 years, would continue to step up its capital investment in the country by enhancing its local manufacturing capacity. “We have concluded plans to expand our business base in the country, albeit the prevailing economic challenges. We are a proud Nigerian company doing business here since 1923, and we intend to stay for even longer”, he said.
“At Unilever, we believe that businesses cannot exist without the environment, which is why we ensure that we create value that sustains our ecosystem. Nigeria is strategic to our business operations in Africa, and as we continue to do business here, we will add value to the community, to the people and the country.”
Also speaking at the event, Igwe Alfred Nnaemeka Achebe, Unilever Nigeria’s Board Chairman, who led the Unilever delegation, spoke extensively on Unilever’s commitment to adding value to the economy, stating that so much work has been done, and more underway, in contributing to the employability and capacity development of thousands of Nigerians.
“We currently provide employment to thousands of people across the country directly and indirectly through our supply chain, and we will do more as we enhance our local operations. We are also working with different partners to empower rural women, build small business skills and enhance the skill sets of students to make them employable once out of school,” he said.
“As a company, we are committed to the growth and development of Nigeria and we will continue to do our best to support the various initiatives of government, while stepping up our capital investment in Nigeria”, he added.
In his response, President Buhari commended the company for their long history in Nigeria, and commended their efforts in sustainable development over the years. He noted that his administration recognizes Unilever’s drive towards establishing industries that have created various employments for Nigerians especially the youths.
He said, “I appreciate Unilever’s efforts in creating more employment and job opportunities through agriculture and it is a good thing at this time as my government is also focused more on agriculture. Nigeria is a country that can feed itself if only it can put more drive towards agriculture and I know Unilever is passionate about development and agric. We are, therefore, endeared by your commitment to enhancing this sector thereby creating a sustainable environment for all.”
“Our aim is to provide the enabling environment to help businesses thrive in Nigeria, hence, we want to assure you of our continued support in this regard” he added.