04 October 2016, Abuja – A United States’ industrial firm, General Electric, on Monday announced its plans to invest about $150m (N45.8bn) in Nigeria by 2017.
“There are development projects where we are investing,” the Chief Executive Officer, General Electric in Africa, Jay Ireland, told the Financial Times Africa Summit in London. The GE said it would also invest in oil and gas industry projects.
Growth in Nigeria, whose economy is in recession for the first time in more than 20 years due to low oil prices, has been stunted for decades by a lack of investment in its road and rail network.
Ireland said the investment in Nigeria was part of a plan to spend $2bn in Africa in coming years.
But the $150m investment falls short of the sum the Federal Government had said the GE would invest.
President Muhammadu Buhari, on Saturday in a speech marking Nigeria’s Independence Day, said the GE was “investing $2.2bn in a concession to revamp, provide rolling stock, and manage” some of the country’s railway lines.
The GE, which has operated in Africa for over 100 years, had last month restated its commitment to invest $2bn in facility development, skills training, and sustainability initiatives across the continent by 2018.
The company restated the commitment at the 2016 US-Africa Business Forum.
Two years ago, the first US-Africa Business Forum drew the attention of the world to the promise of Africa. Governments and organisations discussed opportunities in infrastructure, innovation, and workforce development, and together committed more than $33bn in deals, investments, and financing to accelerate African growth.