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Advertising Industry Rejects Lai Mohammed’s Controversial Order

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The Heads of Advertising Sectoral Groups (HASG) have rejected the Federal Government’s fine for advertisements placed on foreign owned media channels and production of content abroad by advertisers.

This was stated via a press release signed by the HASG on Wednesday, 31 March.

The statement on the fine was attributed to the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, which was reported widely on many leading newspaper channels on Monday 29th March 2021.

In the honorable Minister’s comment during discussions on the NTA Good Morning Nigeria show, he stated that Nigerian brands that run adverts during foreign matches must compulsorily advertise during Nigerian Premier Football League games.

The Minister also stated that brands that produce their advertising materials abroad will pay a fine of N100, 000, each time such adverts are run, adding that advertising materials promoting Nigerian brands must be directed and authored by Nigerians inside the country.

In response to the Minister’s statement, the HASG explained that advertisers put their advertising investment where the eyeballs of Nigerians are.

“The media decisions are driven by the consumers’ interest, passion, inspiration and aspirations. CNN and other international news channels are watched by Nigerians locally and internationally, the world is now a global village and Nigerians do not only live within our physical boundaries. Nigeria based news channels and contents developed locally are also consumed across many countries beyond our borders, with no special fines and levies imposed on companies who place adverts within them” they stated.

While understanding the merits of supporting the local industries, the HASG still urged the Minister to allow the support for locally produced content develop organically sighting the example of the Nigerian music and entertainment industry, as well as the movie industry, which only developed through organic growth and creativity of the practitioners and not by forced legislative fiats.

They stated that the government can support the growth of the industry by funding it in the areas of technical infrastructure, content development grants, and investment in tools of measurement of advertising effectiveness and efficiency.

The HASG further urged the Minister as well as the National Assembly to engage and involve the industry players and practitioners more, especially in formulation and development of policies that will affect the industry.

The HASG as a body is made up of Advertisers: Advertising Agencies, Media Agencies, Marketing Activation Agencies, Out-of-home Media Agencies and Broadcasting Company groups.

 

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