By Shuaibu Zubair Tatu, Birnin Kebbi
Kebbi State Government is partnering with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) to facilitate the industrialisation of the state.
Kebbi state governor Alhaji Abubakar Bagudu said that the state government would provide counterpart fund of 1 million dollars to hastening the actualisation of the agreement.
Bagudu played host to a delegation of UNIDO led by the UNIDO representative to ECOWAS and Regional Director , Nigeria Regional Office, Mr. Jean Bakole who visited him at Government House, Birnin Kebbi yesterday.
”He state government will provide counterpart fund of 1 million dollars to hastening the actualisation of the agreement ,Kebbi state desired industrial growth and department of the partnership with UNIDO as timely and helpful .
”Kebbi State has been blessed with solid minerals such as iron ore deposits expressing confidence on the ability of the state to begin steel development in the future.
The governor told the delegation that his administration has embarked on intensive investment drive which has led to the establishment of industries in the state such as rice processing Mills and other agro allied products.
He affirmed resolve to utilize the partnership with UNIDO to enhance the economic fortunes of women and youths as panacea to industrial progress.
Bagudu informed his hosts that recently, Kebbi State has entered into joint partnership agreement of 10 million dollars with United States African Development Foundation (USADF)
which would improve rice value chain, groundnut and dairy production in the state through farmers cooperative scheme.
He further stated that Kebbi signed an agreement with Egyptian Fish experts on developing fish potential in the state in addition to the dairy production with Oyo State and rice production with Lagos State.
Bagudu also reiterated that his government has open up the state for investment opportunities even with its unique advantage of having borders with Benin and Niger republics. He assumed the UNIDO delegation that in 2020 ,at least two more companies would be commission in the State.
Earlier, the UNIDO representative to ECOWAS and Regional Director, Nigeria Regional Office, Mr.Jean Bakole, said that UNIDO would assist Kebbi State in formulating industrial policy in order to fastback industrial development in the state.
Bakole announced that Sixty Million dollars would be expended under the program designed to last for five years.
He said that the Federal Government was expected to contribute 30 million dollars while the balance of 30 million would be sourced from other partners such as the states, saying that
He also emphasized that industrialisation remained the basic foundation for economic development and poverty eradication of any country.
The Region Director, commended Governor the governor for his zeal and determination to making Kebbi State an industrial hub once again assured the governor that UNIDO would assist Kebbi in changing economic the narrative of the state.
” Our commitment from UNIDO after fruitful meeting with the governor to formulate industrial and environmental policy for the state, support SMEs to by providing training tools for establishent of bushiness for women and youths who are the major beneficiaries.
“” Kebbi is blessed with many sources of energy such as hydro, solar, bio and wind that could support the setting up of industries , we are going to support Kebbi state for successful establishment of industries in the state ,” he said.
He applauded the vision and aspiration of governor Bagudu towards diversification of the state economy through agriculture, describing it as the right step to industrialisation.