Saturday, March 11, 2017 3:05 am
By Daniels Ekugo
The British American Tobacco in Nigeria has said it has spent a total sum of N2.6 billion on diesel annually with its 4.7 mega watts back up generator which takes 25,000 litres of diesel daily, amounting to 1 million litres of diesel monthly and N216b on taxes in Nigeria over the years.
According to Charles Kyalo, Area Operations Manager in Ibadan, Oyo state, “BAT Nigeria’s performance was below expectations, impacted largely by regulatory determinations and economic pressures as well as operational challenges.
“Some level of uncertainty remains with regards to the implications of the oil price and currency fluctuations, which may lead to slower economic growth.”
Besides, the company said is also facing price competition, because of illicit tobacco which has a total market share of 60 per cent while 40 per cent is what the firm maintains, with the attendant regulatory pressure in markets such as Nigeria.
However, despite these conditions in its Nigerian market, the Group still impact heavily to 4,000 farmers across the country.
“The British American Tobacco Nigeria is the biggest and one of the very few local manufacturers of tobacco in Nigeria and the only producer that is vertically integrated: it serves tobacco leaves from farmers in Nigeria. Its presence in Nigeria helps to promote and guarantee local content and economic development in the country. It is one of the key players in the private sector on which government hopes to anchor its bid to diversify the non-oil sector of the economy. Comptroller General of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), Col. Hammed Ibrahim Ali (Ret.), during a visit to the company’s factory in Ibadan in 2016, noted that BATN is one of the excise companies that generate huge revenue for the service”.
On its Health and Safety policy, Kyalo said “BATN’s comprehensive Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) management system has been in place for many years and is based on international standards, including ISO 14001.
“Environmental issues, health and safety are high priorities for responsible companies, and the firm has demonstrated this by working in partnership with relevant organizations such as the Federal Fire Service, Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), among others, to impart additional knowledge on environment, health and safety measures to all its employees.
“Every year, BATN aims to improve its EHS performance, systems, programmes, data-gathering and target-setting, and develop new ways of reporting on progress.
“Its environmental management systems conform to international standards such as ISO 14001. There is a zero target for accidents across its operations in its safety management.
“BATN’s Occupational Health Management (OHM) Programme ensures that none of its staff is exposed to any of the major cause of Occupational Health hazards. The firm seeks to proactively prevent work-related illness by recognising hazards, assessing the risks and applying appropriate controls. For this reason, it has two on site clinics that provide health services for factory workers in Ibadan and Zaria.
“Moreover, there is a comprehensive medical service for its entire staff and their immediate family all over Nigeria. It also provides workplace health education programmes for its staff.
“BATN partners with the Federal Fire Service to ensure that workers are exposed to the best practices in safety at work place. Its target is zero accident(s) in all area of its operations.
Kyalo concluded that “It was In recognition of its commitment to safe workplace standards, that the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), South West Zone, in March 2016 honoured BATN with the award of ‘Best Kept Industrial Premises.”
Pic caption: Courtesy Visit By President Of Manufacturers Association Of Nigeria To BAT Ibadan Factory with Freddy Messanvi, Director, Legal & External Affairs, West and Central Africa, far left and Charles Kyalo Director of Operations, BATN West Africa, far right.