â€¢ Belemaoil appeals for US business liaison office in Port Harcourt
The United States Government has called on the government and people of Rivers State to jettison election violence in the 2019 elections and in return get more investments from America and other foreign nations.
The call came as the Founder/President of Belemaoil Producing Limited, Mr. Jack-Rich Tein Jnr, urged the United State Department of Commerce to site its Business Liaison Office in Port Harcourt to attract more investments to the state and also advance mutually beneficial interests.
Speaking during a courtesy visit to Belemaoil Producing Limited at its corporate headquarters in Port Harcourt yesterday, the United States Consul General in Nigeria, Mr. F. John Bray, noted that Nigeria was going into a serious political period and urged the people of Rivers State to use the opportunity to change the general perception about the state.
Â His words: â€œWe are going into a very serious political period in Nigeria. One of the most terrible reputation for electoral violence is right here in Port Harcourt. When I was speaking with Governor (Nyesom) Wike last night, I said if you want investors to come, letâ€™s have free, fair, transparent, non-violent elections in Port Harcourt. Let the world see that. Yes security is important.â€
Bray also urged Nigeria to start planning and develop programmes that would develop the youth and create employment opportunities to take care of the countryâ€™s rising population.
He noted that academics estimate that more than 77 per cent of Nigerians are under the age of 34, adding that projections that the country would be the third largest in the world by 2050, create a scenario that Nigeria would have a â€œyouth problemâ€ if nothing is done.
Â â€œAnother thing that is important when we look at statistics about Nigeria as a country is that according to US projections, by the year 2050, Nigeria will be the third most populated country in the world.
â€œAnd we are looking at something that requires an emergency handling: the youth problem. What we spoke about at the University of Port Harcourt this morning is how we can turn that problem into an advantage. This is going to come through education, training and employment opportunities so that the families can take of themselves and their children and their communities,â€ he said.
The Consul General commended Belemaoil for the giant strides it has made within one year of operations especially in its host communities and urged other businesses to emulate the investment in human resources especially as it affects the host communities to achieve better peace and security in the Niger Delta.
In his remarks, the Founder/President of Belemaoil Producing Limited, Mr. Jack-Rich Tein Jnr, called on the United States Department of Commerce to establish a Business Liaison Office in Port-Harcourt to foster strategic economic growth.
â€œThe establishment of such an office will effectively coordinate the activities of the US Department of Commerce within the Niger Delta as well as promote investment opportunities in the region,â€ Tein said.
He noted that Port-Harcourt is West Africaâ€™s economic hub for oil and gas investment which contributes over 85 per cent of Nigeriaâ€™s economy, adding that: â€œThe city is also the heart of the Niger Delta, which is Nigeriaâ€™s treasure base. Therefore, such US Commercial presence will greatly foster economic and diplomatic cohesion.â€
Tein said the collaboration with the US Department would strengthen existing relationship with the United State and create more value for mutual benefits through collaboration in areas such as trainings and workshops, technical partnerships, procurement of equipment, materials and spare parts, acquisition of state-of-the-art technology to support home economy, and other bilateral relationships with Rivers State and the federal government.
On the achievements of the company within one year of operation, Tein said the Belemaoil has over 3,000 direct employmentsÂ to youths, over 400 local/overseas scholarships and achieved 100 per cent eradication of incidences Sabotage/Vandalism of pipeline within the OML 55 operational area.
He said the model has brought â€œrestoration of confidence, cooperation and partnership with host communities which guarantees economic activities, create jobs, empower our host communities and thereby occasioning peace and stability within the Niger Delta.â€
Under the companyâ€™s Graduate Trainee Scheme, over 100 graduates were currently on training in different technical and engineering fields, adding that under its medium term plan, direct benefits to communities would include 36,000 employment generation for monitoring patrol guards as well as skilled and unskilled jobs.
Critical benefits of Belemaoilâ€™s operations to the Federal Government, Tein said, include peace and order with increased regional youth employment;Â investment-friendly climate for other injectors/investors based on investment friendly environmentÂ maintained by Host Communities and increase in crude oil production and revenue.