‘Nigeria’s industrial centres to get regular power supply from 2013’

22 March 2012, Sweetcrude, RIO DE JANEIRO – Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, says Nigeria’s industrial centres will have regular power supply from next year.

Speaking during an investment forum in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Aganga quoted the Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji, as saying that from 2013, the country would have enough power to distribute to industrial centres.

This, he said, was part of efforts aimed at industrialising the Nigerian economy, adding: “The move will reduce production costs and make Nigerian manufactured goods more competitive in the global economy.

“The idea is to make sure that the industrial centres have uninterrupted power supply, at least during the day, until the problem of the power sector is totally fixed. The ministry of power has identified nine cities, and the pilot has started in one city already,” Aganga noted.

He reiterated that the Federal Government had strengthened the Nigerian Investment Promotion Council in order to make the Nigerian environment more investor/business-friendly.

“The government has begun moves to make the one stop shop more effective and efficient. This will enable investors to do all their registration within 48 hours,” he said.

He added that the Committee on the Review of Nigeria’s Trade Policy had also submitted a report/draft strategy that would lead to the birth of a workable and result-oriented trade and investment policy in the next few weeks.

This, in addition to the Doing Business and Competitiveness Committee, and the Committee on Investor-Care, which were inaugurated recently by President Goodluck Jonathan, were part of efforts aimed at “improving the Nigerian business and investment climate, and making the country the hub of trade and investment in Africa, and globally,” he added.

Also at the forum, the Ambassador of Nigeria to Brazil, Mr. Vincent Okoedion, disclosed that trade between the two countries hit $6billion in 2011, noting that, more importantly; the trade was in favour of Nigeria.

He, however, said that the trade was in oil and oil products, adding that “we want to see the trade diversified to non-oil products and that is why the government is doing all it can in that regard.”

“In Africa, Nigeria is the biggest exporter to Brazil. We are Brazil’s most important trading partner. And we can be Brazil’s most important destination of investment in Africa,” the ambassador said.

The Director, FIESP, (one of the leading industrial federations based in Sao Paulo), Mr. Newton de Mello, said Nigeria and Brazil had so many things in common, adding that there should be further collaboration between the two countries in order to see to increased investment flow.

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