Major Brands Set For Drinks Festival

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Remy Martins, Jack Daniels, Best, Bigi and many more have already booked their booths to exhibit at this gathering of stakeholders in the alcohol/beverage industry. Participation as an exhibitor is not limited to alcoholic drinks companies but any kind of drinks. From cocktails to juices, yoghurt, soda, water, champagne, tea, palmwine, zobo and other local drinks companies, all are welcome to exhibit at the Festival. Exhibitors will include but are not limited to drink brands, suppliers, merchants, wholesalers, brewers, importers, manufacturers and service providers. For exhibitors, the festival provides the perfect opportunity to distribute product samples, increase sales, gain direct access to the press, conduct market research, allow direct customer interaction and promote a positive image for the industry.

Asides from the exhibition, the International Drinks Festival will feature Masterclasses with various drink professionals and a Drinks Summit which will give the attendees opportunities to ask questions and interact with the drink</a> There will also be informative presentations by world-class experts plus interactive sessions between retailers and suppliers. The Festival will attract over 200 exhibitors cutting across nine sectors. The Drinks Summit which is a major part of the festival brings together all stakeholders that are involved in the drink industry. It is going to be a powerful summit with over 50 speakers from all sectors. Delegates at this summit will comprise mostly of stakeholders in the beverage industry, which includes but are not limited to brewers, brand owners, retailers, drink enthusiast, fun seekers, sommeliers, Suppliers, Bottling companies, international mixologists, cocktail mixers and much more. With the heavy media presence being anticipated and participation from local and international stakeholders, the Drinks Summit is set to be the pioneer groundbreaking event that the Industry has been missing. The Festival itself is bound to attract over 15,000 guests and promises to be an experience.

He lamented that successive governments have failed to promote the study of sciences among the youths due to their inability to provide the basic tools needed for the teaching and learning of the subjects. While listing the economic, social and cultural benefits of STEM, Prof Akpan said, "The science community believes that STEM is the greatest value to man and its environment. It has a dual mandate, which is to ensure that everybody has a basic literacy in science and to prepare future engineers, medical doctors and others in the society. How many of us know and have an idea of the universe? Many countries globally are manufacturing things, but sadly in Nigeria, we cannot even fix a door.

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We are getting to an era of artificial intelligence, where computers are almost taking over from human beings, if care is not taken, we may be left behind globally in the scheme of things. He added, "The world is moving, but from our side here, we are static as nothing is happening. People talk about the curriculum, but I can tell you that that is not the problem. I have travelled all over the world for science exhibitions and I do see their curriculum; it is really not about the curriculum in itself, but actually what they can do. Infrastructure is a major deficit in Nigeria.

It is critical in science. We have people who schooled here and when they go out, they excel. She said, "No matter our huge investments in students, without a corresponding gesture to teachers, the nation cannot go far. Teachers are the bedrock of the society; they must be well trained to embrace technological education because you cannot give what you don’t have. In the same vein, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Global International College, Mrs Abolaji Osime who also harped on effective teachers’ training said the educational system must be overhauled to meet technological needs. She noted that the economy has changed from oil-based to technology hence the need to review the curriculum along this line, while also training teachers to meet current trends.

The Vice President, Global Scientific and Regulatory Affairs, Coca-Cola Company, Atlanta, United States, Dr. Wamwari Waichungo has called on Nigeria to take issues of food safety and regulation seriously in other to drive the country’s economy. She said the country needs scientific discipline on handling, preparation and storage of food in other to prevent food borne illness, adding that this will add to customer confidence for patronising local foods and beverages. I worked for several years in Nigeria before I left for Atlanta, and what is easily noticed is that hardly you find anything sourced locally in Nigeria, yet the country is very green with high rainfall. For this to change, there must be conscious efforts, not only by food scientists or other members of the value chain, but the government as well. They should be involved through policies and implementations. Providing a way out, the food scientist said government should introduce incentives and policies, as this has worked in several countries that have grown their local industries. She said there should be agricultural incentives to build agricultural products, or incentives to build factory facilities. Then, there should be disincentives on importation of such products. With incentive and disincentive, the market will be much more competitive, and then benefit local production eventually," she said.

The party described Shehu’s statement as the height of absurdity, adding that Maina’s immediate family has come out openly with their position that President Muhammadu Buhari was responsible for his return.. In a statement issued thursday by PDP’s National Publicity Secretary, Dayo Adeyeye, the party accused the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led government of playing to the gallery while claiming to fight corruption. We are not surprised on the postulation by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Shehu in which he blamed the past administration of Jonathan as being responsible for the return of fugitive Maina. This is to say the least the height of absurdity.

May we therefore remind Shehu in case he has forgotten that the current administration is that of the APC and not PDP, so we wonder how PDP will be responsible for the mess created by President Buhari and his cabals. We had earlier in our response on this matter advised the government to properly investigate those responsible for this mess and bring them to justice, and we still stand on that because Nigerians are tired of excuses and blame game. PDP said the body language of the APC government in the fight against corruption is mere propaganda and road-show, maintaining that the idea of blaming every misdemeanor on previous administration is symptomatic of party’s failure to deliver on promises. Its time Shehu and his likes resigned if they have nothing more to contribute to government. Finally, we urge the APC-led government to re-evaluate the inclusion of the likes of Shehu in the administration. A man who is fixated on blaming each and every mistake of this government on the PDP has certainly run out of ideas, and must even have lost the capacity for rational thinking. We wonder the damage he may be causing to this country with his continuous stay as an assistant to the president," PDP said.

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) Thursday approved the 2018 Appropriation Bill. He also said the federal government in liaison with the National Assembly would resolve the date of its presentation. THISDAY had reported Thursday that the bill would be presented by the president on Tuesday. But lack of presidential communication to the National Assembly to that effect as at Thursday made the scheduled presentation technically impossible. The minister, however, said the executive remained committed to its promise to make the estimates available this month. Udoma said: "Council approved a draft 2018 budget proposal. So, we will be liaising with the National Assembly on a date in which the president will formally submit the budget to them. It is the president’s prerogative to submit the budget, submit the proposals and give the details.

I will be operating above my brief if I do that; the Constitution gives that authority to the president. We did promise that the budget will be ready in October and it is ready in</a> We are liaising with the National Assembly because they have to approve the date for the president to come and address them to submit the budget. Also, briefing State House correspondents, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, said capital release for 2017 had increased to N450 billion from the less than N350 billion that it was as at June. Adeosun listed the benefits of RTF to include: accelerated road development across the nation; reduction in pressure on the federal budget by allowing private engagement and cost reduction through the provision of a new benchmark in road costing.

She also said the fund would foster private sector participation in hitherto federal government monopoly by creating more efficient delivery of road projects. She explained that: "Federal roads are critical in unlocking socio-economic development. While they account for just 17 per cent of the total national road network, federal roads carry more than 80 per cent of national vehicular and freight traffic. Nigeria’s road network consists of 200,000 kilometres of which 33,000 kilometres are federal roads according to the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing. The deficit in roads is so large that there is a need to mobilise additional funding sources. The Road Trust Fund is a revision of the existing infrastructure tax relief scheme that allows for tax relief to companies that incur expenditure on public infrastructure. To date, just two companies have been able to take advantage of this provision.

The reason being that few companies are large enough to solely undertake road projects. The RTF, being a collective model, can mobilise funds from a range of taxpaying companies, irrespective of their location or sector. RTF is, therefore, expected to mobilise significant capital into road provision. RTF uses a collective model to mobilise private capital from companies of all sizes to undertake road projects through a series of Road Trust Funds. Each fund will be a stand-alone Collective Infrastructure Fund (CIF) using a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV). We have already consulted with the private sector in the development of the RTF and some companies have already identified roads they wish to reconstruct and are organising their funding. However, this scheme is designed such that financial intermediaries will be promoting Road Trust Fund projects and soliciting commitments from interested companies.

Nigeria has saved over N216 billion from the importation of rice alone from Thailand and other countries, since the nation’s domestic mass production flooded the markets under the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP). Prince Niyi Akenzua, the Executive Director, Risk Management and Finance, Bank of Agriculture disclosed on Thursday in Ibadan when he visited Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State. Akenzua led some other officials of the bank on the visit to the state. President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration. Akenzua said it was worthy of commendation that the country had committed itself to diversifying from oil economy, with emphasis on revitalisation of agriculture. He said he had embarked on advocacy visit around the country to enlist the support and involvement of state governments in ABP, which freed the country from reliance on importation of rice.

We enjoin Oyo State to participate in the ABP as we have remodelled the programme to expand the scope of beneficiaries. One or two rice millers in Thailand have closed down because Nigeria, which has always been their major importer, has stopped importing their rice. Nigeria and with our consciousness that every square meter in the country is arable land. We felt that it was not sustainable. Of course, the crash in crude oil price has forced us back to agriculture,’’ he said. Akenzua said that the state could choose a particular crop to produce under the programme, with a promise to co-fund or fund the production of such crop.

Ajimobi in his remarks commended the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh for the positive changes he had brought into the agriculture sector since he assumed duties at the ministry. The governor stated that the fundamental problem besetting the country was attitudinal, stressing that the country was not bereft of knowledge, policies and programmes capable of enhancing its economy. Ajimobi said that the state was supposed to be the food basket of the nation, if past leaders had seen agriculture as a major solution to unemployment, hunger and economic driver. According to him, the state is in good stead to be a major agric hub, judging by the concentration of reputable research institutions in the state and its vast arable land. He advised the new management of BOA to do all that is humanly possible to sustain the momentum in its renewed drive to revitalise the agriculture sector. You need to change the attitude of our people so they will know that there is money in agriculture. We are in this sorry state today because of bureaucracy and lack of sustenance of past agric policies. What has happened to Operation Feed the Nation?

Professional women have called the President Muhammadu Buhari to increase the number of women serving in his administration. They made the call at the conference marking the 30th anniversary of the Women Research and Documentation Centre (WORDOC) of the Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan. The conference was themed: "Thirty Years on: What Do Women Want, What Should Women Want? WORDOC was established by renowned historian, Prof. Bolanle</a> They contended that while former president Goodluck Jonathan raised women inclusion from 10 per cent during President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration, to 33 per cent, the figure has gone down in the current administration of President Buhari.