Babatunde Fashola, minister of power, works and housing, has described local investors as most dependable partners to drive progress (Oganiru) through public private – people partnership for a vibrant and inclusive economy in Enugu State.
Fashola said this yesterday at the Enugu State Investment Summit with the theme “Beyond Oil: Fostering Inclusive Economic Growth and Sustainable Development.”
He saw the summit as a move that fits with the Federal Government’s policy of self-dependence, home-grown productivity, diversification and inclusion.
“As a new government, you must be ready to be marathon runners. Not everything will happen during your tenure. But you must have the courage to plot the journey and start the work,” Fashola said.
Represented by Ayo Gbeleyi, the minister acknowledged the importance of security, healthcare, sanitation, justice, education and land administration in attracting investment competitiveness.
“If you have a population that is hostile to people who visit their land, who assault surveyors, who grab land already allocated or a government that revokes people’s title, you are indeed shutting the door against Oganiru.
“So, in order to make progress, we must improve upon our performance in those areas where we have control in order to become more competitive,” he said.
Meanwhile, Enugu State is looking to privatise and commercialise some of its old or moribund assets across some sectors. The assets include Ada Rice Production Limited, Hotel Presidential Limited, Ikenga Hotels Limited, Sunrise Flourmills Limited, Nigergas Company Limited, Nigersteel Company Limited, United Palm Products Limited, Enugu Vegetable Oil Products Limited, among others.
Speaking at the summit, Ike Chioke, director-general of Oganiru, believes that the summit will indeed mark the beginning of a full-scale economic turnaround in Enugu State and the entire South-Eastern region of Nigeria.
The state has put in place systems that will ease private sector participation in Enugu State, Chioke said, adding that through the ministry of commerce and industry, the state has also establish a one stop shop for all enquiries regarding investing.
“We are committed to leveraging our competitive advantage, solid mineral deposits, agriculture potentials, tourism as well as regional co-operation to ensuring that we improve the lives of our people”, Chioke said.
Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, governor of Enugu State, noted that the State is resuscitating its moribund industries while opening up new ones for the benefit of its people.
He was concerned that dreams and aspirations towards improving the living standards of the people of Enugu State by providing them quality services and infrastructure is being challenged by dwindling economic resources accruing to the State, especially from its portion of the FAAC Allocation.
“We are committed to utilizing the available resources judiciously to deliver on our campaign promises to our people,” Ugwuanyi said.