Increased crude Oil receipts driven by upturn in Oil prices and improved volumes, offer Nigeria a great opportunity to diversify its economy and address fundamental vulnerabilities by deepening and expanding the nation’s non- Oil sectors, President/CE, Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote has said.
Aliko, who was Special Guest at the 3rd edition of the Kaduna Economic Investment Summit, KADINVEST in Kaduna, Thursday 5th April, 2018 said “Given the capricious nature of crude Oil prices, Nigeria must quickly take advantage of the prevailing window of opportunity to diversify its economy”.
Represented by GED, Dangote Group, Engr. Mansur Ahmed, the Business mogul said the gradual recovery of the economy as seen in past few months is an opportunity for all tiers of government to play critical roles to create the best environment and attract massive inflow of private capital and expertise into the economy.
He observed the arguably biggest challenge of Nigeria, job creation, the pervasive consequences of poverty across the country and youth unemployment etc, and said, if other regions with relatively less problems were working hard to attract investment, the North must work twice as hard because it is far behind, trailing the South in virtually all economic and social development indicators.
“A lot clearly needs to be done by Northern states to reduce poverty and create opportunities, especially for the youths to earn decent income”.
Dangote Group, in line with Government objectives set in motion, investment program aimed at improving the economy through cultivation of 130,000Ha of Sugar cane in Niger, Taraba, Adamawa and Nasarawa states directly and via out growers. Cultivation of about 10,500Ha of tomatoes in Katsina, Niger, Zamfara and Adamawa states and cultivation of 150,000Ha of rice across six northern states while Billions of Naira have also been committed to improving the lot of Nigerians through the Dangote Foundation- the largest charitable foundation in Africa with an endowment of $1.2bn.
The CE, lauded the great strides of Kaduna under Governor Nasiru El-Rufai which has led to inflows of investments and commitment of investors in commercial, agriculture, light manufacturing and agro processing sectors.
“KADINVEST is a clear indication of the value the Kaduna state government places on the private sector as an engine of growth, wealth creation and employment generation”.
“Kaduna state has potential to become the regional engine of growth”. Aliko further said.
President Buhari in his Goodwill message to the Summit, said his administration is a witness to the concrete and productive outcomes of KADINVEST since its commencement in 2016.
Other developments in the state include the Olam Hatchery and Feedmill project in 2017.
Federal Government says it will encourage similar initiatives across the sub-national level for the benefit of Nigerians.
Governor El-Rufai said KADINVEST was conceived as platform to attract investments as the most sustainable avenue for job creation and to enhance internal generation and accelerate development of the state.