By NBF News

Top fashion icon and designer of Nigerian Agbani Darego's evening gown at the epoch-making Miss World pageant, Mr. Frank Osodi, is set to work with Best of the World (B.O.W.), Standards Organisation of Nigeria (S.O.N) and other industry stakeholders to rebrand Nigerian fashion for the export market.

Speaking at the Second Advisory Board Meeting of Fashion and Textile Stakeholders forum held at The SON Lekki Lagos office during the week, Osodi, who aided Miss Darego in conquering the World with her shimmering evening wear that dazzled judges and spectators across the globe, said Nigeria has all it takes to conquer the global fashion business, estimated to rake in an annual income of over 1$trillion.

Osodi assured board members that his designs will be on parade at the forthcoming November 11 Fastins Forum event holding at the LCCI Conference and Exhibition Centre, Alausa Lagos. Besides working with Nigerian prints (Ankara), the upscale designer assured members he was set to take Nigerian traditional fabrics such as asoke, akwaocha, adire and akwete to the next level by creating high street designs that will be freely patronised by Nigerians and foreigners alike.

He said he was motivated by current efforts by B.O.W. to refocus the fashion and textile sector for employment and foreign exchange generations and therefore encouraged other stakeholders to rally round for an effective rebranding that would boost the national economy. He therefore, called on fashion designers, textile manufacturers, government ministries and agencies and other industry stakeholders to support the forth-coming fashion and textile industry stakeholders' forum so as to take the industry to the next level.

In a related statement, the Director General of SON, Dr. Joseph Odumodu pledged the support of SON, noting that the fashion and textile sector needed the support of all and sundry in order to bring it back to its former glory.

According to him, the challenges facing the sector led to the closure of many textile factories and job losses nationwide. He pointed out that if properly harnessed, the industry was capable of earning Nigeria huge foreign exchange and creating job opportunities.

He said the BOW initiative was timely as the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment is already working on various initiatives to revive the sector.

The Director General also said it was not too late for Nigeria to take maximum advantage of export opportunities offered by the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA) of the United States government and the Nigeria Export Promotion Council if operators were willing to embrace standardization, quality and meeting customers' satisfaction.

He lauded the efforts by Mrs. Joy Chinwokwu, chief executive officer of B.O.W and canvassed for support of her initiative by members of the board.

Mrs. Chinwokwu, said her organisation is focused and will not relent in its effort to collaborate with industry stakeholders to make the sector not only regains its lost glory, but also to venture out in line with the current mood of the Federal Government to maximize the very huge and attractive potentials of generating employment, attracting local and foreign investors, exporting high quality Nigerian products and thereby, erecting endurable structures for foreign exchange earnings.