Textile industry in Nigeria: History

Textile industry in Nigeria: History

What do you know about textile industry in Nigeria? Read and find out the history of textile in Nigeria. What are main textile companies in Nigeria?

Textile industry in Nigeria: History

Textile manufacturing

Textile industry in Nigeria is ranked to be the first in the manufacturing industry. Speaking about the regions, textile manufacturing is mainly developed in the Northern, Tropical Africa and South Africa, so in comparison with other African countries, Nigeria occupies the third place, after Egypt and South African countries. Nowadays the industry is dominated by cotton production, production of cellulose and synthetic fibers. Silk and wool production is developed quite weakly.

What is the history of textile industry in Nigeria?

Textile industry History

Among the most popular trades, the first place belongs to weaving. Hausa weavers use homemade horizontal lathes for making coloured fabrics, each of them has special name and purpose. The main centre for weaving is in Northern Nigeria - Kano. Even in ancient times Kano was famous for the textile manufacturing.

Hundreds of camels loaded with fabrics move from Kano, crossing the Sahara, were bringing goods to various cities of Africa. In the West, in the cities of Ibadan, Abeokuta, Iseyin, in addition to horizontal textile machines, Nigerians used vertical machines. After manufacturing fabrics was painted in huge tanks.

Textile industry in Nigeria

Textile industry in Nigeria

For dyeing Nigerians used vegetable dyes, often Indigo colour. The fabric was dipped into the vat for several times and kept therein for many days until obtaining the desired color.

To get the pattern on the fabric, before its dipping into the tank there were attached stones or pieces of wood. These areas were used for patterns. In Kano and other cities of Northern and Western Nigeria, almost all the population of entire regions are weavers or dyers. By handicraft method, Nigerians annually produce about 35 million meters of fabric.

Not less popular among Nigerians is weaving from fibers of the raffia palm, they manufacture a variety of shapes straw or reed baskets for storing grains and even liquids.

Textile industry

Top periods of history of textile industry in Nigeria

  1. 60s – steady growth;
  2. 70s – economic boom;
  3. Mid 80s – recession;
  4. Late 80s – industry recovery;
  5. 90s – great improvements.

Cotton production in Nigeria

The growth of the textile industry, mainly cotton, began in Africa from the mid-1950s. In 60-80s, several countries in North Africa market, in particular Nigeria market, became full of cotton production of local manufacturing. Cotton has been always a driving force of the whole textile industry in Nigeria, however agriculture neglect by the government caused substantial decrease in cotton production.


Cotton field

In 1954 cotton production in Nigeria has reached 30,000 MT and consequently, in 1979 it increased to 60,000. After that, in 1988 it accounted only to 30,000 MT.

50% of the production is consumed by Nigeria population, whereas other production is exported to other countries, such as: China, South Korea, Taiwan.

Textile companies in Nigeria

Textile industry in most countries is based on private, mainly foreign, capital. Foreign companies increase investment in the industry, attract local raw material producers. This companies mainly are interested in cheap labor, high demand for products, quick return of investments. In 1987, there were nearly 37 textile companies.

Nigerian textile production - fabrics

Nigerian fabrics

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Basic positions in the textile industry belong to companies of former colonial powers (French "Gonfreville", "Schaefer", "Technion", "Villota"), however, increasing competitive spirit comes from companies in the U.S., Italy, Asia. Among them, special role is played by Japanese companies "AREVA" and "Isibo" which are involved in mixed enterprises and supply of equipment (operating in Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda). Small textile enterprises are owned by national capital.

List of top 10 Currently operating textile companies in Nigeria that are engaged in producing clothing and textile items:

  1. African Textile Manufacturers Limited;
  2. Femro 3 Nigeria Limited;
  3. ABA Textile Mills PLC;
  4. Afprint Nigeria Plc;
  5. Asaba Textile Mills PLC;
  6. Dangote General Textile Products Limited;
  7. Enpee Industries, PLC;
  8. Qualitex Textiles Limited;
  9. Table Source Nigeria Limited;
  10. Udeofson Garment Factory Nigeria Plc.

Problems of textile industry in Nigeria

  • Stagnation;
  • Non-ability to hire casual workers;
  • Inflation;
  • Bureaucracy;
  • Smuggling;
Textile: History

Weaver looms

Textile industry at previous time and now is in the period of stagnation. Smuggling has reached great indicators, as nowadays we are able to see lots of fabrics which come not from Nigeria textile industry manufacturers, but from some Asian countries markets, such as: Malaysia, Vietnam, China etc.

  • Federal government non-intervention;

This way, it’s a great drawback for Nigerian textile market, as such a choice arouses competition among inner and outer textile producers. Federal government doesn’t pay attention to such breaches of law and isn’t willing to do anything to save the situation.

  • Great expenses on factories supply;

This is true, because electricity is so expensive and factories' owners can’t spend money on more qualitative fabrics, but need to buy electricity.

  • High level of insurgencies;
Textile in Nigeria

This influences night shifts, as a great number of workers doesn’t want to go for work at night because of insecurity in the street.

  • Unsold stocks;

This means that supply exceeds the demand.

Hope that now you are fully aware about the condition of textile industry development, textile industry companies in Nigeria, and problems which occur with textile producing in Nigeria. Think that you got inspired for putting in all your time and effort in the revival of textile industry in Nigeria.

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Source: Naija.ng

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