Advertisers kick against minister’s comments on placing advertorials

Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja

The Heads of Advertising Sectoral Groups have kicked against comments reportedly made by the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, that Nigerian brands running adverts on foreign owned media channels would be fined.

HASG is a body made up of advertisers, advertising agencies, media agencies, marketing activation agencies, out-of-home media agencies and broadcasting company groups.

In a statement signed by the various advertising groups that formed the body, they argued that the minister should understand that advertisers put their advertising investment where the eyeballs of Nigerians were.

They said media decisions were driven by the consumers’ interest, passion, inspiration and aspirations.

They said, “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.”

HASG added, “While there are some merits in the bid to encourage and support local production of contents in a bid to support the local industries, the minister must understand that this has to be allowed to develop organically.

“Also, many leading advertisers are multinational companies who rationally seek to explore economies of scale in the production of materials, negotiation costs and broadcast of their contents which run across many countries.”

They noted that even with this said, empirical information and trended data showed clearly that investment on local broadcast stations still outweighed that of foreign channels.

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