Post Views: 109 • Seeks Audience With Dangote On Revival Of Osogbo Steel Mill Governor Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State, said on Thursday in Lagos, that ...
• Seeks Audience With Dangote On Revival Of Osogbo Steel Mill
Governor Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State, said on Thursday in Lagos, that his administration is in a hurry to ensure she occupies her pride of place.
Addressing members of the Nigerian capital market community when he led a team to discuss key areas of collaboration with the management of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), and to dialogue with the capital market community on areas of support to finance projects and invest in Osun State today in Lagos, the governor noted Osun’s enormous natural endowments like mineral deposits, rich arable land and tourism spots that are yet to be harnessed.
Osun State, he noted, “is sitting on a lot of mineral resources that are enough to” change her story for the best.
In a presentation titled: Osun State Finance Commission, Bola Oyebamiji, said a 10-year plan (2019-2028) was developed that seeks to expand the economy and achieve inclusive sustainable growth.
Publicly available statistics of the state, he noted, include the N1.43tr GDP at the end of 2018, just as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) stood at N10.2bn between January and June 2019, which is almost the entire N10.4bn earned for the entire 2018. This, he continues, shows the enormous opportunities in the state, even as its 5.3% unemployment rate is the lowest in a country with an average of 23%.
Continuing, Oyebamiji said the government is working towards creating opportunities in the light manufacturing segment so as to drive economic growth, in addition to partnering with the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife for software development that can engage the teeming youth population, in addition to investments in technical education for middle-level skilled labour and man-power needed to drive the robust growth envisaged under the plan.
On why investors should look the way of Osun at this moment, the commissioner lists its comparative advantage to include its readily available land for agriculture, huge mineral deposits, skilled labour, relatively stable electricity, and ongoing aggressive road infrastructure renewal.
The government, he continued, “has set up a land-bank to secure them, such that families that own land have deposited them in the bank, such that potential investors can use them for the benefit of all stakeholders.”
He put the total land size in the bank at 10,000 hectares, with plans to grow it to 25,000; in addition to 1,600ha already set aside for a free-trade zone fitted with an industrial park.
The government, he continued, is also rehabilitating the MKO Abiola Aerodrome located in Ede, used to airlift Nigerian contingents during the Second World War, with plans to reconstruct and turn it into a cargo airport for transporting farm produce across the world.
The government, he noted, is seeking private sector investors on a Build-Operate-and Transfer, or any other agreeable model.
This, he stressed, is in addition to another 206ha of land already secured for a dry port in Osogbo, the state capital, assuring that there is low cost of living, just as labour is relatively cheap across the state.
In answer to a question on the moribund Osogbo Steel Rolling Mill, which has remained fallow despite its privatization, the governor said he is trying to secure an appointment with Aliko Dangote (who acquired the mill when it was privatized by the Federal Government) to discuss its revival.
“We want to appeal to him to see how he can bring it back to life,” the governor added.
Welcoming the governor and his entourage to the exchange earlier, chief executive of the NSE, Oscar Onyema, acknowledge the administration’s efforts at revitalizing the education, mining, agriculture, textile and tourism sectors of Osun. He also noted Governor Oyetola’s passion for excellence and dedication to promoting the revitalization of moribund projects across the state, commending in particular, the administration’s “execution of a partnership agreement with the Federal Government to develop gold mining potentials of the state.”
Continuing, Onyema stressed that building a sustainable economy for the estimated 4.31m citizens of Osun, “supported by vibrant sectors and diverse enterprises, both state-owned and private sector enterprises will require access to right-sized capital.”
“This commitment is demonstrated by the proposed Osun Economic and
Investment Summit scheduled to hold later this month, with the primary aim of emphasizing the State’s Developmental Agenda of sustainably repositioning the State economy and delivering prosperity to all Osun people,” he added further.
In its ongoing plans to revive some state-owned commercialized entities, the NSE boss recommended “consideration of Capital Market solutions by way of debt and equity instruments for the re-capitalization and revitalization of these institutions for optimum capacity utilization and investment returns. Examples of such institutions are; Omoluabi Mineral Promotions Company and the MKO Abiola Airport project.”
Photo caption: Governor Olugboyega Oyetola of Osun State (third right) hitting the ceremonial gong to close trading on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Thursday, November 7, 2019. He was accompanied by the Deputy Governor, Benedict Olugboyega Alabi (second right); Kamarudeen Kareem Oladosu, National Council Member of the NSE (right); Haruna Jalo-Waziri, Managing Director/CEO, Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) Plc (left); Yemisi Salisu (second left); and Oscar Onyema, Chief Executive Officer, The NSE (third left).