We’Ve Taken Painful But Necessary Decisions To Guarantee Long Term Prosperity For Nigerians–Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari has said his administration, in the last six years, has taken very painful but necessary decisions to invest for a long-term prosperous future for Nigeria.
He said while these investments decisions will come with short term pains, they are needed to fast-track the growth and development of the Nigerian economy.
The president spoke on Tuesday in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, at the opening of a three-day “Future Investment Initiative Summit.
The event was attended by top officials in both the private and public sector such as the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroluem Corporation Mele Kyari, the Central Bank of Nigeria Governor Godwin Emefiele, African richest man Aliko Dangote, the founder of BUA Group, Abdulsamad Rabiu, and the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Timipre Sylva among others.
The President told the gathering that his administration has taken many steps to make the Nigerian economy competitive and investment friendly.
He listed some of these steps to include the diversification from oil to more inclusive sectors such as agriculture,
ICT and mining; tackling corruption, insecurity and climate change; and introducing a Social Investment Program.
He also stated that his administration has introduced policies that supported investments in agriculture
and food processing, adding that loans loans and technical support have been provided to small
holder farmers, through the Anchor Borrowers Program.
As a result, Buhari said Nigeria today has over 40 rice mills from less than 10 in 2014. Nigeria also has over 46 active fertiliser blending plants from less than 5 in 2014.
He said, “Furthermore, in agriculture, we have reformed the process of obtaining inputs such as fertilizer and seeds. We have several million
hectares of available arable land and have embarked on the creation of Special Agriculture Processing Zones across the country.
“These initiatives, we believe, will make it easier for investors in agriculture.
“Two months ago, I signed the Petroleum Industry Act. The Act will serve as a catalyst to liberalize our petroleum sector.
“It has introduced a number of incentives such as tax holidays, 100 percent ownership, zero interest loans and easy transfer of funds.
” In addition, we have highly skilled in-country workforce and a large domestic market. In mining, we have also made several opportunities available for investors.
“Nigeria is a country rich in minerals from gold, iron ore, tin, zinc, cobalt, lithium, limestone, phosphate, bitumen and many others.
“We have made the licensing process easier and also made extensive investments in rail and transportation.”
The President said infrastructure investments represent significant potential for investors in Nigeria, adding that there are opportunities for more investments in seaports, rail, toll roads, real estate, renewable energy and many others.
“We have created several institutions that are available to co-invest with you in Nigeria.
“We have the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority and more recently, I approved the creation of Infrastructure Corporation of
“These institutions are run as independent world class institutions to make investments in the country and are available to co-invest with you,” he added.
In addition, he explained further that the development of social infrastructure such as healthcare and education present enormous opportunities for investors in a country like Nigeria.