Plateau State Governor Mr. Simon Lalong, on Monday, said his administration was committed to reviving ailing industries in the state with a view to creating jobs and reducing poverty. He said Plateau was desirous to partner Dangote Group towards realising this goal. The governor stated this in Lagos, when he led a team of top government functionaries on an investment visit to the Chief Executive Officer of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, at its Corporate Headquarters in Marble House, Ikoyi. Lalong, who spoke in a statement to journalists through his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Mr.Emmanuel Nanle, said that his meeting with Dangote was intended to woo the billionaire-investor to invest in core areas of agriculture with emphasis on wheat, rice, tomato and Irish potatoes on large scale production. He said solid mineral exploration and processing; agro- based industries and capital injection on a public private partnership into the revitalization of ailing industries in the state, would be addressed. The statement said that, "The Plateau State Government is willing to do all on her part in terms of policy formulation, tax holidays, provision of land and security of investment in any of the sectors. He said, "Plateau State has secured the Federal Government's support to guard all mining sites in the state from the encroachment of illegal artisans, miners; and we also make bold to say that we have concluded arrangement to re-acquire the former BARC Farms, which has a wide expanse of about 5000hectares; and to also open up the Bokkos farm project with its existing 300 hectares for investment in agriculture, this is beside the potential to acquire other arable lands within the state." Responding, Chairman of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote commended the governor for the steady return of peace in Plateau state, saying that the violent conflicts that engulfed the state in the past had hindered investments in the state. Dangote said with the return of peace, openings surely exist, because of the state's favourable weather, which promotes large scale cultivation of wheat, rice, vegetables and fruits, adding that his company was interested in exploring the potential. He lauded the governor for keying into the new global trend of employment creation and revenue generation through private sector participation, assuring Lalong and his team of his readiness to send consultants to engage with the government and explore key areas of business interest.
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