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Buhari approves N50 billion for NEPZA To build Infrastructure 

President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved N50 billion for the Nigerian Export Processing Zones Authority, NEPZA in the 2018 budget to build key infrastructure that will attract foreign direct investments (FDI) into the country.

The Managing Director of NEPZA, Barrister Emmanuel Lyambee Jime made the disclosure yesterday in Abuja during an interactive session with Journalists. He said the President also granted the same amount to the Authority in the 2017 fiscal year thus putting the agency on the right track to attract investment and development to the country.

Jime disclosed that previous governments budgeted a paltry N2 billion yearly for the agency to develop infrastructure, which made it impossible for Nigeria to compete with other countries for investments.

With the improved funding of NEPZA, Jime, who was appointed Managing Director about seven months ago, noted that the infrastructure deficit is now being addressed. 

“Nigeria currently have 34 free trade zones but only 14 are active. To stimulate investor confidence, the country needs the right infrastructure in place so any investor can just walk in with his brief case and install his machines and begin operations,” Jime said.

On staff welfare, he disclosed that all staff are being paid regularly, while no staff is owed promotion and arrears of six years have been cleared by his management to stimulate productivity and dedication.

Jime also disclosed that he has worked quite hard to improve Inter-agency cooperation between the Authority, the Immigration and the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS with a recent visit to the Controller General of the Customs.

To attract FDIs, NEPZA has put in place a basket of incentives including a complete holiday from all federal, states, local government taxes, rates and levies, duty free importation capital goods, machinery/components, spare parts, raw materials and consumable items into the Zones.

Others are 100 per cent foreign ownership of investments, 100 per cent repatriation of Capital investment in the Zones at any time with capital appreciation of the investments and waiver of all imports and export licenses among others.

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