The Federal Government has assured the diaspora investors that it will support them with a credit facility to enable them to invest in different sectors of the economy, especially the agricultural sector of the economy.
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbe made the pledge on Tuesday in Abuja during the maiden Diaspora Investment Summit organized by the Senior Assistant to the President on Diaspora, Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa.
Ogbe said that the Bank of Industry (BoI) will make the credit facility available to the investors in the agricultural sector at a low-interest rate, assuring that the facility will be ready within 90 days.
According to him, the government is working very hard to support investors with the necessary information on trade and investment, saying, they should liaise with the Nigeria Investment Promotion Council.
Nigeria has great business opportunities which have not been tapped urging the investors to take advantage of the enormous investments potentials in the country, Ogbe stated.
He added that the return on investment in Nigeria is one of the highest in the world.
The minister explained that the reason Nigeria cannot create job was due to the effect of the World Bank programme – Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) introduced by the military administration of former President Ibrahim Babangida which he said will take Nigeria decades to recover from the setbacks.
Instead of promoting growth, he said, the SAP somewhat decelerated the growth of most economies in Africa and placed the continent in perpetual debt due to high-interest rate.
Speaking further, Ogbe said that President Muhammadu Buhari administration has initiated good Programmes aimed at returning the country on the path of trajectory growth.
Agriculture is the most viable sector you can invest because it has a high return on investment, for instance, you can invest in Castro oil production, farming, cattle and milk production, fisheries, and cashew nut processing.
He, therefore, called on the diaspora investors to invest in the processing of raw materials into finished goods to create jobs for the teeming youth in the country.
The minister revealed that the federal government has ordered for four cashew processing plants at the cost of $1million each and will be installed in Enugu, Ondo and two other states at the end of the year 2018.
He also promised to create a diaspora desk on agriculture for quick access to information and inquiries.
Earlier, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola urged the diaspora investors to also invest in the energy and housing sectors of the economy.
Fashola said that the present administration has done much on the area of housing saying that the government will continue with its intervention on road projects across the federation.
Some of the participants called on the government to fix the road leading to the Apapa seaport to enhance business activities.