Kasim Sumaina in Abuja
The federal government has assured Canadian investors of incentives and conducive environment needed for their investments to thrive.
The Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, gave this assurance at the on-going two-day, Nigeria-Canada Investment Summit with the theme: ‘Fostering Strong Business Partnership into the Future’.
This is even as the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Alhaji Abubakar Bwari, stressed that the vast opportunities that exists in both the down and upstream sectors of Nigeria mineral development are clearer and ready for exploitation.
Osinbajo, in a statement by the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, affirmed the tremendous opportunities for increased scope of trade and investment between Canada and Nigeria as he stressed the need to fully realised Nigeria immense investment potentials.
He stated the various reforms put in place by the government of Nigeria to improve the ease of doing business in the country. He made reference to the inauguration of the Presidential Enabling Environment Committee (PEEC) being chaired by him as part of government efforts at improving the ease of doing business in Nigeria.
The Committee according to him, was charged with progressively removing the challenge face by investors in doing business in Nigeria and ensure coordination across several ministries and agencies of government.
“With the supports of the leadership of the National assembly and state government, we were able to drive reforms that held us a place as one of the World’s 10 hub performing economy.”
The Vice President was confident that government’s on-going efforts of harnessing the entrepreneur energy of Nigeria youthful population, would bring about meaningful contributions to Nigeria GDP and in developing home grown solution that would help the country achieve the sustainable development goals.
He noted that the Nigeria Economic Recovery Growth Plan (ERGP) of the government has identified some of the sectors that many Canadian investors are already familiar with as priority sectors.
These according to him include; power generation, devolvement of gas to power, mining and solid minerals. Others are agriculture, food processing, manufacturing and real estate.
“Towards the achievement of ERGP, we conducted focus labs which are special intervention targeted at resolving specific bureaucratic bottlenecks facing large scale investments in Nigeria,”, he further explained.
He informed participants at the Summit that Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) was in the process of building a data base of investment opportunities across Nigeria to guide potential investors.
In his address, Bwari said the history of Nigerian Mining Reform cannot be complete without mentioning the positive roles that Canada, and Canadians played in helping to midwife it, giving it direction and protection.
The minister said Nigeria’s mining relationship with Canada dated back to 2013, when Canada and its firms provided training and critical expertise to the sector before the relationship took a turn for the worse, according to him.
He, however, said the country is currently witnessing the gradual return of Canadian Mining Companies into Nigeria’s Mining jurisdiction.
“One of the more famous ones is Thor Explorations Limited which is continuing with its mine development and exploration works over Segilola Gold Project in Ilesha, Osun State.”