The Nigerian Government signed a $30 billion agreement to foster industrial revolution in the country and boost export earnings from made in Nigeria products.
The agreement, which was signed in the Council Chambers of the State House, marked the formal preparation for the take-off of Nigeria industrial revolution plan as conceived in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan.
The investment partners who co-signed the agreement with the federal government were Africa Export and Import Bank (AFREXIM), Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), African Development Bank (AFDB), Bank of Industry (BOI), and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA).
The project, which was tagged Made in Nigeria for Exports (MINE), will designate three different parts of the country as special economic zones. The three places named were Enyimba Economic City, in Abia State, Funtua Cotton Cluster in Katsina State and Lekki Model II in Lagos State.
President Muhammadu Buhari, who spoke at the signing ceremony, said Project MINE was conceived to position Nigeria as the pre-eminent manufacturing hub in Sub-Saharan Africa and a major exporter of made in Nigeria products to the West African sub-region, the entire Africa and the World.
The president also revealed that the Special Economic Zones (SEZ) project had been championed by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelahmah but under his direct supervision.
According to Buhari, the project was designed to boost the country’s manufacturing share of the gross domestic product (GDP) to the tune of 20 percent, generate $30 billion in annual export earnings and create 1.5 million jobs by 2025.
He added that to achieve this, the Nigerian Government was offering investor- friendly incentives, up-to-date infrastructure and ease of doing business with a view to attracting local and foreign investments.
Buhari called on experienced special economic zone developers and operators to partner with Nigeria, with the overall goal of upgrading the existing free trade zones in Calabar and Kano owned by the government.