Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga
In a bid to ensure that Nigeria becomes one of the growth drivers of world economy by 2020, the Federal Government has embarked on steps to diversify the country’s economy and ensure that ongoing reforms are sustained, Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, has said.
Speaking at the ongoing investors’ conference organised by FBN Capital Limited, Aganga said Nigeria would continue its quest to become the leading investment destination in Africa through strategic policies and diversification of the economy.
According to him, this would enable the nation consolidate its position as Africa’s leading investment destination with a Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) of $8.9 billion which represents 16 per cent of Africa’s total FDI of $55 billion in 2011.
Aganga, who was represented by Director-General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Mr. Joseph Odumodu, said the government was committed to consolidating on the gains so far recorded by strengthening the one-stop investment centre of the Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC). “Our target is to achieve a 48-hour response for all investment linked enquiries,” he said.
Attributing the FDI growth to the growing investor confidence, Aganga noted that the creation of the Trade and Investment ministry by President Goodluck Jonathan had impacted on the country’s economic growth through its strategic trade and investment policies and programmes.
Commending FBN Capital for organising the conference, the minister said the nation has the potential to sustain its drive towards emerging as one of the world’s leading economies given the continuous cooperation of all stakeholders.
He said the government would step up activities geared towards promoting investment opportunities in Power, Food, Education, and Transportation sectors, adding that the administration would also move to stimulate investment in other sectors of the economy through diversification and stimulation of investment in the oil and gas downstream sector.
Flagging off the two-day conference, Managing Director of FBN Capital, Mr. Kayode Akinkugbe, said this initiative was a necessary follow-up to the maiden edition last year.
The maiden edition of the investor conference focused on Nigeria’s aspiration journey to becoming a recongnised emerging market.
“We aim to move the conversation on to considering the enabling factors and practical actionable initiatives that can be taken to boost Nigerian growth. Some of these micro economic areas are: capital market, agriculture/agro-allied, real estate, power and oil & gas,” he said.
In his remarks, the Managing Director/CEO, FBN Holdings Plc, Mallam Bello Maccido said the conference could not have come at a better time in light of the Federal government’s transformation and reformation programmes.
Stating that FBN Holdings had always taken the leadership position in championing the cause of promoting national economic growth and development, Maccido said the forum would afford both investors, key operators and stakeholders in different sectors a strategic platform to interact, network and proffer sustainable solutions to the cause of moving the nation ahead.