NIPC says fresh $5.4bn investments coming to Ogun as focus shifts to solid minerals
Executive secretary of Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), Yewande Sadiku, has disclosed that some new foreign investors have shown interest to inject $5.4 billion in various sectors of Ogun state economy in the next few years, saying the investments are part of new foreign direct investments recently tracked by the Commission.
Sadiku explained that NIPC whose core objectives are to attract, promote and co-ordinate investments in the country, both local and foreign, has tracked $5.4 billion fresh investments which are still at the announcement stage and could only be translated into real investments in few years if required critical infrastructures were put in place by government.
The Executive Secretary of NIPC, who moderated at one of the discourses held in Abeokuta during the concluding part of 2018 Ogun State Investors’ Forum, tagged, “Industrial Hub: From No.1 in Nigeria to No.1 in Africa” on Wednesday, noted that the fresh investments announced by NIPC would be based on petrol-chemical, agriculture, solid minerals, oil and gas, manufacturing, technology, among other areas.
She however warned that though several billions of dollars’ worth of investments had already been established in Ogun state in the last seven years, government should not be complacent in providing needed critical infrastructures that will convince the prospective investors not to look elsewhere as they may be tempted to divert the investments to other states if what they want is not met.
“A total of $5.4 billion fresh investments announcement had been made by NIPC about Ogun state, and that can as well be translated into real investments if necessary steps are taken to practically domesticate the investments in the State as the prospective investors might be tempted to divert the investments if necessary infrastructures are not on ground”, she said.
Corroborating Sadiku’s position on new investments which are coming to Ogun state, George Nassar, managing director of Procter and Gamble, said although the state government had fought various bureaucratic bottlenecks that could have affected the growth of investments in the state, he however pointed out that Ogun State could beat Lagos in terms of investments and commerce if infrastructures such as ports and rails were developed.
George, who was represented by Temitope Iluyemi, said, “Our experiences here have been positive, there is no time we visit any state officials and His Excellency (Governor Ibikunle Amosun) for small or big problems, they always solve them for us, but I think they need to do more in the policy making, taxation and infrastructures.
“You (Ogun) can still get some business from Lagos and beat Lagos. You only need to develop ports in Ogun state and other infrastructures that attract more investments. You have ability to develop ports, airport, seaport and even rail that make business easier.”
Responding to the issues raised, Bimbo Ashiru, Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, pledged to start contacting the prospective investors announced by the NIPC, saying the choices and interests of both existing and would-be investors would be adequately considered before government embarks on any infrastructural projects.
He also declared that government was shifting focus to solid minerals and mining as next point of investments in the state, explaining that Ogun state has 12 industrial solid minerals that anybody can consider in the non-oil sector as the state produces largest tons of solid minerals in the comity of states in the country.
He added that the state hosts 35 steel rolling mills and produces over 20 metric tons of cement annually going by what Lafarge Africa PLC, Dangote Cement, Purechem Industries and some other cement factories produce, saying the state produced 16.3 million tons out of the total 43.4 million tons of solid minerals, which Nigeria produced in 2016, representing 37.65 percent.
RAZAQ AYINLA, Abeokuta
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