Edo Strengthens Collaboration with IDH for Green Economy

*Attracts €3m fund to support oil palm production

Adibe Emenyonu in Benin-City

The Edo State Investment Promotion Office (ESIPO)-Ease of Doing Business Secretariat recently held a strategic meeting with representatives from the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH), Netherlands, to solidify their partnership and explore ways to maximize the impact of initiatives geared towards a green economy, with ESIPO’s one-stop-shop playing a central role.

The meeting, held in Benin City, saw discussions centred on maximizing the impact of IDH’s programmes in the state, particularly the National Initiatives for Sustainable and Climate-Smart Oil-Palm Smallholders (NISCOPS) programme.
Building on the achievements of Edo-NISCOPS I, the new €3 million, five-year programme (NISCOPS II) funded by the Netherlands and UK Governments aims to further support sustainable palm oil production in Edo State.

This will be achieved through collaboration with smallholder farmers and public-private partnerships (PPPs) spearheaded by ESIPO’s one-stop shop. A significant portion of the investment seeks to attract private sector co-funding, further strengthening PPPs within the state.
Looking ahead, key areas of collaboration for a Green Economy in Edo were suggested by the Managing Director of ESIPO, Mr. Kevin Uwaibi.
According to him, “I commend the longstanding partnership with IDH, dating back to 2019. The “Analysis of Key Investment Opportunities in Edo State Oil Palm Landscape 2020” facilitated by ESIPO with IDH’s support, was a great achievement. “
Uwaibi emphasized several areas for enhanced collaboration to amplify communication and visibility of IDH’s programs, ensuring sustainable empowerment for smallholder farmers.  

These areas included: Branding the one-stop-shop with a focus on showcasing Edo’s commitment to a green economy, with the one-stop-shop providing a seamless documentation process for potential investors seeking to fast-track their business documentation and licences; capacity building training for the one-stop shop’s liason officers from the relevant MDAs, ensuring efficient support for businesses entering the green space.
Others are support for the passage of the ongoing land administration bill, a key factor for attracting investment in agriculture; and donor coordination meeting in facilitating a meeting to improve communication and visibility among stakeholders regarding IDH’s activities and how they connect with the one-stop shop’s services.

Uwaibi also noted: “We will need to ensure all relevant MDAs are on the same page on this. Hence, a collaborative effort with the Ministry of Environment and Sustainability to ensure messaging aligns with the state’s overall green agenda. We will leverage the resources of the Edo State Oil Palm Programme (ESOPP); Forestry Commission, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security for maximum impact.

In his statement, Mr. Ogwu Abraham.D., IDH’s Senior Program Manager leading the delegation, expressed IDH’s willingness to collaborate and translate these discussions into tangible results in the coming weeks working with ESIPO and key Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
This strengthened partnership between ESIPO, IDH, and various MDAs holds significant promise for a green economy for Edo State.  
Green economy is an economic system that prioritises both economic growth and environmental sustainability. With the one-stop shop at the forefront, this collaboration is poised to derive environmental, economic, and social benefits.

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