• Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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Now is time to invest in Nigeria, Oyebanji tells investors

Oyebanji and politics of inclusivity

….wants investors to take advantage of Tinubu’s economic reforms

Governor Abiodun Oyebanji of Ekiti State has, in Dallas, USA, told the foreign investors to take advantage of the current economic reforms in Nigeria to invest in the Country.

“This is the right time for any investor to invest in Nigeria”, Oyebanji declared at a panel session, one of the major events at the 2024 US- Africa Business Summit organised the Corporate Council on Africa ( CCA), citing the current reforms of the President Bola Tinubu’s Administration and the synergy between the Federal Government and the State Governments.

In attendance at the session were heads of national government and sub- national governments; investors; policy makers and development agencies drawn from different parts of the world, including the Chairman of the Board of Corporate Council on Africa, John Olajide.

Governor Oyebanji, in his presentation also cited a few successful collaboration between Ekiti State Government and some international investors, including Cavista Holdings and Promasidor to make a case for more direct investment in the state, stressing that the right time to invest in the state is now.

He said, “Now we have a reform-minded government that is visionary and we have 36 state governors (I am one of them) and these are people that have keyed in to the vision of the President Tinubu’s Administration.

“And like I have said, the economies of sub-nationals are so critical to the Nigerian economy itself. So, for any investor that wants credible return on their investment, this is the time to invest in Nigeria because the market is readily available, the people are ready, we have a government that is reform-minded, transparent, and trusted by the people.

“Nigerians believe in this government because we have a President that has done it right and all the governors have keyed into his vision as well. So, the time to invest in Nigeria is now.”

Wooing Investors to Ekiti, Governor Oyebanji said the State Government is strong on regulatory framework which are designed to protect investors and investments in the state.

“What we are doing is to ensure that we have a stable and predictable regulatory framework and there must be trust because I believe that for any business to thrive, trust is key. You must have a leader that is visionary, trust-worthy, and transparent. All these, we have in Ekiti State and that is why I am here today so that we can have more investors like Cavista who are relevant to what we are doing in the State.

“So, the sub-nationals are critical to developing the Nigerian economy, but for them to attract credible investors there must be clear regulatory framework. The ease of doing business has to be top notch, security must be guaranteed, put in place the building blocks that will allow businesses to grow and thrive. Things must also be done in the way and manner that will give them confidence to bring their capital to invest.

“The Cavista story is one of our success stories and I am proud of it. Cavista Holdings came to Ekiti State as a company we were not aware of but they showed interest in one of our moribund assets that has been there for many years and nobody wants to touch it. Cavista came to discuss with us but through the help of NIPC, they told us to set up an Investment Promotion Agency so we have an IPA that shields investors away from government bureaucracies.

“So, they do things the private sector way and we also set up a very strong regulatory system. We have a predictable policy because we realized that when you look for development, investors look for returns on their investments. So we have all our businesses plan being driven by the Ekiti State Development and Investment Promotion Agency (EKDIPA) and the Director-General has access to me directly so that when there are issues, I can give the executive backing.

“So we started with the facility at Ikogosi Warm Spring and Resort that we are so proud of, and they told us what is expected of us as a government and because of the recent reforms of the Federal Government, which ceded resources to sub-nationals who are able to build critical infrastructure to support investments. Now the Resort is a success story, and because of that, we have now migrated from Tourism to the Agriculture.

“In Nigeria, there is a central government and there are 36 state governments with governors as heads of states; The Nigerian economy is the aggregate economy of sub-nationals and so if the sub-nationals do well, the country will do well as whole. The Federal Government realizing this put in place structures to assist subnational in areas of business development and attracting private investors into their space.

“As a governor of a state you have responsibilities within the state but there are some critical areas that are better left in the hands of private investors. So through the Nigerian Investment and Promotion Council ( NIPC), the Federal Government collaborates with states and tell us what we need to do to make the state investment-friendly because capitals (finances) will move to a place where they are welcome.

“So, there are healthy competitions amongst the 36 states to get very responsible and credible private sector players into our states.”