Shettima urges shift to non-oil sector to unlock nation’s potential

Tasks Investors To Explore Manufacturing, Agriculture, Digital Innovation 

Vice President Kashim Shettima on Friday made a strong call for a shift from dependence on oil to other critical sectors to boost the investment climate and attract returns to Nigeria’s economy.

He consequently identified agriculture, manufacturing, renewable energy and digital innovation, among others, as sectors that could unlock the nation’s potential.

The Vice President, who spoke during the Existing Foreign Direct Investors Roundtable at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, said these sectors align with the nation’s development priorities outlined in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).

He noted that the eight-point agenda of the Renewed Hope under the administration  “signals diverse avenues for investment, from agriculture to renewable energy.”

“Through targeted incentives and public-private partnerships, we aim to unlock the full potential of these sectors, catalysing job creation and socio-economic empowerment across the country,” he added.

Shettima assured the investors and other development partners of a business climate that is characterised by transparency, accountability and regulatory certainty, even as he implored them to “recognise the indispensable role of public-private partnerships in mobilising resources, sharing expertise and mitigating investment risks.”

He observed that with the non-oil sector contributing 93.62 per cent to Nigeria’s GDP in the first quarter of 2024, it was imperative to explore other critical sectors of the nation’s economy.

His words: “It is not by chance that the non-oil sector contributed 93.62 per cent to the nation’s GDP in the first quarter of 2024.

This significant shift from our oil dependency invites us to explore diverse sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, renewable energy and digital innovation.

“These sectors not only promise attractive returns but also align with our national development priorities outlined in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) and subsequent blueprints.”

Shettima further said the administration adopted some mechanisms for the ease of doing business, which, according to him, “stimulate investment across critical sectors and strengthen the capacity of public institutions, ensuring that industry stakeholders are never undermined.”

Emphasising the importance of investment in the life of a country’s economy, Shettima noted that it was not just about financial returns but also “building lasting legacies and making enduring contributions to society.”

He told the investors that their investments are capable of uplifting “communities, create sustainable livelihoods and drive inclusive growth.”

He noted: “The life of every economy is defined by the volume of investments it accommodates and attracts. Investments are the lifeblood that fuel innovation, drive growth and create opportunities for prosperity.

“Today, as we gather for this roundtable with our esteemed foreign direct investors, we celebrate not just the capital that flows into our nation but the confidence, trust and partnerships that these investments represent.”

Shettima further stressed that President Bola Tinubu’s visionary leadership and pro-business background were added incentives to investing in Nigeria under the present dispensation.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Deputy Chief of Staff to the President, Sen. Ibrahim Hadejia, commended development partners, foreign investors and other stakeholders for participating in the meeting.

Hadejia outlined some of the efforts made by the administration to boost the investment climate in Nigeria.

He said most of the measures already adopted by the administration were at different phases of implementation and would yield fruits in the coming years for existing and aspiring investors to see.

In her remarks, the Technical Adviser to the President on Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), Princess Zahrah Mustapha-Audu, presented the summary report of a survey conducted to aggregate views about foreign investments in Nigeria, noting that the outcome of the exercise would be critical to the efforts by the Tinubu administration to boost the investment environment in the country.

She explained that the programme – ‘Existing Foreign Direct Investors Roundtable’- is centred around seeking ways of retaining and scaling up investments in Nigeria, noting that the outcome of deliberations at the forum would be harnessed to boost existing frameworks and policies aimed at encouraging foreign direct investment in Nigeria.

Also present at the roundtable were the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Mr. Wale Edun; Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Doris Uzoka-Anite; the Managing Director of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), Mr. Aminu Umar-Sadiq; CEO of Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), Aisha Rimi; the Comptroller General of Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS), Kemi Nandap; the representative of the CBN Governor and representatives of other federal government agencies.

Other participants included the UAE Ambassador to Nigeria, His Excellency Salem Saeed AlShamsi; the leadership of the American Business Council, other members of the diplomatic corps and technical partners.

The post Shettima urges shift to non-oil sector to unlock nation’s potential appeared first on Guardian Nigeria News.

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