Posted by Uche Usim, Abuja | 13 May 2019 | 540 times
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah, has revealed that the Federal Government targets $30 billion from export of various finished products from Nigeria in line with its industrialisation agenda, via the establishment of industrial parks/special economic zones across the country.
He also said 1.5 million direct and 10 million indirect jobs will be created via the industrial parks as government remains determined to see to their fruition.
Enelamah made the disclosure in Abuja at the weekend in an interactive session with journalists.
According to him, the products to be exported are those Nigeria has a comparative advantage in, pointing out that the initiative has been captured the “Project made in Nigeria” programme.
He said: “We’ve passed the point of no return on the issue of Industrialization and building of industrial parks.
“The President has signed it. It’s an initial $500 million investment outlay, and we’re providing a counterpart funding of 125 million. It’s like how the NLNG was formed. The money will come in tranches.
“Already, we’re working hard on further achieving more strides in the area of ease of doing business. We’re also addressing critical infrastructure and pursuing various sector reforms. We’ve comparative advantage in agro-processing, petrochemical, agriculture and others.
“We’ve the CBN, AfDB, AFC, NSIA, Afreximbank and others are on board with us,” he said.
On ongoing efforts by the Industrial Council to reduce smuggling activities by 50% in the short to immediate term, the Minister said various anti-smuggling reforms were being implemented which he said has led to fair competition for locally produced goods like rice.
Enelamah added that a Public-Private-Partnership private sector capital to build and maintain roads and guarantees participants’ timely and full recovery through tax credits was in place, adding that potential saving of N175 billion hitherto lost annually to the economy via bad roads.
“There is a plan in place to generate additional 4.2 gigawatts of power to the national grid. Alaoji power plant has been selected as the asset for the pilot project. Increased power supply can add at least two per cent to Nigeria’s annual GDP to about $7 billion,” he said.
On the new cassava policy, the Minister said plans are afoot to ensure the crop, in the next four years, creates 500,000 jobs and increase local production of starch from 38,000 metric tons to 1,437,000 metric tons.
“Increase resolution of cassava for industrial use from 400,000 to more than 9 million tubers. There is also plans for the capital expansion and cassava processing clusters and to facilitate improved utilization of the cassava bread development fund, which is being managed by the Bank of Industry (BOI),” he added. (The Sun)
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