FG  EARMARKS 51.4 BILLION TO CREATE SIX SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONES

 FG  EARMARKS 51.4 BILLION TO CREATE SIX SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONES
Minister for Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelemah

Federal government has set aside N51.4 billion  to create six special economic zones in the country.

Minister  of Industry Trade and Investment, Dr Okechukwu Enelama  disclosed this  on Thursday  while declaring open a  stakeholders’ forum of Oil and Gas Free Zone Authority, OGFZA in Onne, Rivers state.

The Minister who was represented by  his  Minister of State Hajia   Aisha Abubakar  said the  provision which is contained in this year’s  budget would strengthen the nation’s economic sector, adding that it also reflected the government ‘s  recognition of free zones as veritable engines of growth for the  economy”.

”In order to underscore the critical role of the Free Zones as drivers of economic growth, the Federal Government in the 2017 budget estimates, made a strong policy statement in support of the concept of the Free Zones by setting aside a special provision of N51.4 billion for the establishment of six Special Economic Zones (SEZs) in the country having recognized Free Zones as veritable engines of growth for the economy”, she said.

She said the  Federal Government would continue to support  investors in the oil and gas free zones in the country, adding that the free zone had attracted over twenty billion  dollars investments to the nation and created about 200,000 direct and indirect jobs.

“Over the years, the Oil and Gas Free Zones have attracted more than $20 billion in investments and created about 200,000 direct and   indirect   jobs.  They  have also facilitated  the transfer  of skills   and   technology   in   the   oil   and   gas   sector   to Nigerians”, she said.

On his part, Managing Director, of the OGFZA, Mr Umana Umana   unveiled  a road map of the  zone  that will   create a robust environment for investment.

He  expressed   strong hope that the new drive would facilitate “ establishment of businesses in the oil and gas free zones “

Continuing, Umana, said he was    set to develop warm partnership with Federal Government agencies operating in the zones, assuring that there would be all round improvement in the quality of services.

“ Finally permit me to reiterate that our roadmap document will usher in a new era in the oil and gas free zones. We will improve the ease of doing business , we will improve overall service delivery to our clients in line with global best practices , we will make the free zones the first ports of call for investors “, he said.

 

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