From Maduabuchi Nmeribeh, Kano
The Director General of Bureau for Public Enterprise (BPE), Mr. Alex Okoh, has said that the Federal Government is targeting over $2 billion export value from the Kano Free Trade Zone (KFTZ) project.
Mr. Okoh who stated this in Kano on Tuesday, during a courtesy call to Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, said the Federal Government is investing so much to ensure that KFTZ is upgraded to world class level, so that it can yield the desired economic gains.
According to him, KFTZ would become covetous among its type across the globe by 2027.
“This is placed on the premise that the Zone could become a location of choice for agro-business, textile companies and leather industries,” he added.
Briefing the Governor about the vision for the project he stated that KFTZ is designed to become the, “largest processor of hides and skin and integrated leather apparel and goods processing, major processor of key agricultural goods, eg grains and tomatoes.
“Integrated textile and garment manufacturing, fully integrated and reliable supplier network, partner of choice with large agri-business companies and integrated and strong logistics and distribution capabilities to urban centres in the South.”
Mr. Okoh further revealed that, “the concession strategy involves no divestiture of shares in any form. BPE has adopted this strategy for some of the key national facilities that are performing well and contributing massively to the country’s economy, these are The Nigerian Ports Terminal and Hydro Power Generating Plants.
“The proposed concession of the FTZs are therefore intended to be used to transform the two FTZs (Kano and Calabar) into world class standard facilities as obtainable in other regions like Asia, etc.
“To create massive job opportunities for the teeming youth in the immediate locality and to promote exports, attracts foreign direct investment, improve infrastructure amongst other benefits.”
In his remarks,Governor Ganduje said that, “we are really commending all the strategies you put in place. Like issues that have to do with the concession. I am also assuring you that as a state we will do our best to see how we can move things to work very well.
“It is very important for Kano to play a vital role in the concession. We are also urging that all your parts are done with urgent consideration. As politicians and leaders, we have timeline.”
He maintained that, “Kano is a hub of commercial activities by history and antecedents, he also called on all the stakeholders to work assiduously in making sure that the aim is achieved, for the overall development of the state in particular and the nation in general.”
Dr. Nasiru Sani Gwarzo, Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment, who represented the Minister of Trade and Investment, commended the state government for the commitment towards the completion of the project.
“Your Excellency we are in Kano to engage with all the stakeholders. As we are in the state where such discussions would be fruitful,” he said.