Edo to unveil economic blueprint at investment summit

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State

The Edo State Government is to unveil its economic blueprint fashioned after the Economic Growth and Recovery Plan (EGRP) launched by President Muhammadu Buhari earlier in the year.

The 168-page EGRP document covers years 2017-2020 is expected to guide the management of the state’s economy. In line with the provisions of the EGRP for the growth of the nation’s non-oil sector, the Godwin Obaseki-led government in Edo State will at the Alaghodaro Investment Summit showcase its agricultural programmes among other initiatives.

According to Obaseki, the maize farm is part of his administration’s accelerated agriculture initiative to boost job creation in the state, as between 50,000 to 80,000 agricultural jobs would be created before the end of the year in the state.

The first phase of the initiative targets job creation for 1,000 farmers through the cultivation of 5,000 hectares of maize farms across five local government areas of the state.

The Edo Industrial Park which has received positive reviews by development analysts will top discourses at panel and technical sessions during the three-day Alaghodaro Investment Summit in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

On completion, the industrial park will be linked to the Azura-Edo Independent Power Plant (IPP) under construction, situated close to Nigeria’s main trunkline, the Escravos Lagos Pipeline System (ELPS) which is only 1km from the Azura-Edo project site.

On job creation, the 200,000 job target of Edo State is expected to be reviewed at the summit side by side with the sectors that can produce the highest number of jobs, as encapsulated in the Economic Growth and Recovery Plan.

“Ease of Doing Business is a major item that received the EGRP attention. At the moment, Nigeria is ranked No. 169 out of 190 countries. The plan envisages improved ranking to around No 100 within the plan period.

“The efforts of the Edo State Government in removing barriers to trade and investment include the signing into law, the Private Property Protection Law. The law has criminalised the activities of Community Development Associations in the state. The CDAs were notorious for harassing land owners by making them pay all sorts of illegal levies and fraudulently sold people’s property until the PPA Law was put in place by the Obaseki-led government”, a statement from the state government read in part.

According to Dr Alex Oti, a banker, “The EGRP represents the first blue print by this administration to not only deal with the present economic meltdown, but also to ensure growth in the medium term.”



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