President Muhammadu Buhari is delighted that the ‘significant’ growth in the non-oil sector is creating thousands of jobs across the country.
The President said this during a meeting with a Qatari business delegation led by the former Emir, Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani, at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
“As you are aware, Nigeria just exited its worst recession in more than two decades. We have more than doubled our foreign reserves,” he said in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu.
“We are winning the war against corruption, we are developing our infrastructure, and we are enforcing the rule of law. As a result of this, we are seeing significant growth in the non-oil sector which is creating thousands of jobs across the country.”
President Buhari also praised the rise in foreign private investments in the country, owing to the success of his administration’s economic agenda.
He described the Federal Government’s economic agenda as one designed to move Nigeria from over-reliance on crude oil and food importation.
The President told the delegation that in the last two years, the policy has turned the nation into one of the most attractive investment destinations in Africa.
He said: “My administration’s economic agenda has always been to move away from over-reliance on crude oil and food importation. Nigeria is a blessed country, we have fertile land, we have a young and energetic population, and we have a very strong legal and regulatory system that protects capital and investments, both local and foreign.
President Buhari cited the current strategic partnership between Moroccan and Nigerian fertiliser companies as part of the success stories.
According to him, Nigeria has at least 13 functioning fertiliser blending plants with another four in the pipeline as a result of the alliance that is purely driven by the private sector.
The President stressed further that In 2017, the country saw significant commitments and agreements by major global organisations in infrastructure projects.
These, he said, include: “The proposed $9billion Dangote Refinery and Petrochemical complex in Lagos; the completed $600million Lafarge Plant in Calabar; the proposed rail stock; the proposed $1.3 billion public private partnership with General Electric on Rail Track Development; and the proposed ENI/Agip rehabilitation of Port Harcourt Refinery.”
“You can see clearly that foreign private companies are coming back to Nigeria and making massive investments within our existing legal and regulatory frameworks,” President Buhari informed the meeting.
On his part, Sheikh Al Thani said that the global opinion on Nigeria as an investment destination had been boosted by President Buhari’s strong standing against corruption and adherence to the rule of law.
He also informed his host that the delegation is interested in investing in Nigeria’s oil, railway, aviation and power sectors.
Those present at the meeting are the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari; Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, as well as the ministers of state for petroleum resources, Ibe Kachikwu; and that of aviation, Hadi Sirika.
Sheikh Al Thani was also accompanied on his visit to Nigeria by the former Prime Minister of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Baber Al Thani, among others.
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