• Thursday, June 13, 2024
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Firm to invest $1bn in bitumen exploration in Ondo

Ondo Govt flags off 2024 planting season

By Jacob Akintunde

Lucky Aiyedatiwa, the Ondo state governor, has said that his Administration is open to offering incentives to attract both local and foreign investments into the economy of the state to drive development.

According to him, with the many natural and mineral resources in the state and plans of the government to develop a deep sea port and enhance infrastructure, the state is wide open for investors to do business.

Aiyedatiwa, who stated this on Thursday when he received the management of Owena Bitumen Exploration Nigeria Limited led by Musa Ibrahim Mantu, the chairman of the company, assured the residents of more investments coming into the State.

The team, which included expatriates from Italy and France, represents the company globally and specializes in mining, refining, and processing of bitumen and other allied resources.

Mantu, according to him, the primary goal was to explore bitumen in Ondo State, with a processing plant already under construction in Ijebu Ode, projected to be the largest in the world.

He said the company had secured approximately one billion dollars in financing from Europe and plans to deploy advanced bitumen technology with the support of world-class partners within the next 12 months.

Read also: Ondo deputy governor, Adelami tasks youths on skill acquisition

He added that their collaboration would leverage local raw materials with their technological expertise to process resources independently, minimizing the need for crude oil transportation.

Aiyedatiwa, in his response, expressed optimism about the partnership, noting its potential benefits, including employment creation and local economic stimulation, despite the refinery being located in Ijebu Ode, just a short drive from Ondo State.

He added that the development of the Ondo sea port, construction of Araromi to Lekki road and the newly flagged off Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway, which will pass through the port corridor, would boost the bitumen exploration venture.

He, therefore, assured the delegation of the Government’s cooperation, particularly in ensuring a secure and conducive business environment.