COVID axes 2000 auto dealers jobs

COVID axes 2000 auto dealers jobs

Over 2,000 members of the Association of Motor Dealers of Nigeria (AMDON) lost their jobs to the  outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, The Nation learnt at the weekend.

The figure does not include those that indirectly live on the vehicle import businesses, who also lost their jobs to the pandemic and adverse effect of 35 per cent import duty hike since 2018.

Stressing that the situation has taken a toll on the dealers, its National President, Prince Ajibola Adedoyin, told The Nation in Abuja that the policy has increased the cost of vehicles by 80 per cent.

On the pandemic, he said:  “The coming of COVID too affected it. I can tell you that gradually people are moving out of it.  One, affordability is another thing because those that were managing to buy to resell and go back cannot do so again

“Now because of the cost and COVID -19 some cannot even sustain their businesses again. I can tell you that between that COVID time and now averagely we have lost up to 2,000 jobs because they could no longer cope.”

Narrating how the cost of vehicles has increased, he  said he was in Lagos at the weekend, where there was an acute scarcity of vehicles due to high exchange rate.

Adedoyin said:  “It has increased by more than 80 per cent. As I am talking to you now, I just came back from Lagos and from our findings, vehicles are not even on ground in Lagos because the exchange rate has increased.  What we use N2million to buy, you will now be shocked to hear that it is N3million and N3.2million.”

He said the closure of land boarders has impoverished so many people because a lot good and services that enter into Nigeria through them.

Adedoyin said in as much as the association supports the government on closing borders to tackle security challenges, “the closure of borders has its own biting effects on the economy of Nigeria.”

He recalled that the AMDON had advised the government not to allow the closure to linger on, urging the Federal Government to quickly intervene in ameliorating the situation.

“If something is not done urgently, according to him, there might be a worse situation in the transportation sector, since vehicles account for 90 per cent of transportation in the country,” he said.

He commended the government on its move to reduce import duty to five per cent. Adedoyin urged the National Assembly to expedite action on the ratification of the policy for immediate implementation.

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The Nation

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