By Felix Khanoba
The Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) has called on state governments to set up functional investment promotion agencies to attract both local and Foreign Direct Investments (FDI).
Executive Secretary of NIPC, Ms Yewande Sadiku, who made the call at a virtual media parley in Abuja on Thursday, said the Commission has developed a database for states that contains essential information including contact details of persons of interest to investors.
She said the move was to afford NIPC a scientific basis that can be used to enhance working relationships with states and provide the necessary support to sub national investment promotion mechanisms.
Yewande, however, expressed concern that about 10 states in the country cannot boast of a functional Investment Promotion Agency (IPA), saying that the ugly development was discovered in a survey carried out by the Commission.
“According to the survey 26 states representing 72 per cent have a functional IPA with a mandate to promote investments, six states representing 17 per cent have the function situated within a Ministry, and four states representing 11 per cent have it in government bodies other than an IPA or Ministry.
“However, in reality according to our records, existing structured SIPAs are not up to 26 but we continue to encourage the state governments to set up these agencies backed by legal instruments,” the NIPC boss said, in a presentation at the media parley.
The survey also revealed the sectors that have the highest investment attraction in states to include agriculture, manufacturing, education, solid minerals development and construction or real estates.
The Commission advised States Investment Promotion Agencies (SIPAs) to leverage on its database and its several reform programmes to improve their efficiency and effectiveness in investment promotion drive.
Also speaking at the event, NIPC’s Director in charge of Investment Promotion, Mr Adeshina Emmanuel, said the Commission has put in place an investor tracking mechanism to follow up with investment announcements with a view to translating them into actual investments.
“The Department, working with Stratcom, is developing an investor tracking sheet which it intends to use for the purpose of follow up to know how the Commission may help in actualizing investment plans,” he said.
Speaking further, Adeshina said NIPC has also designed a standard web-based template for profiling investment opportunities and manages the collected information with an intelligent, modern database.
“The template allows the collection of information on the key features of any investment prospect, and the economic impact of the actualisation of the prospect,” he added.