The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has said that Nigeria is still the investment destination of choice because of its abundant human and natural resources, in spite of the security challenges.
Aregbesola also said that the government is not just aware of the challenges but has owned up to them, assuring that ‘’the challenges that we face are transient, we shall overcome them. Hopefully, they will soon be a thing of the past.’’
The minister who reiterated that ‘’the federal government is deeply concerned about national security and we will spare not efforts to secure lives, property and every inch of our territory,’’ added that the cardinal objective of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration is to improve the Ease of Doing business in the country.
‘’Nigeria is still an investor’s dream, where there is abundant raw materials, highly skilled and affordable workforce and the largest market of goods and services in Africa. The return on investment has always been mouth-watering,’’ he pointed out.
According to Aregbesola, his ministry has handled 14,790 companies and granted 126,893 quota applications for licenses or permits for expatriates to work in Nigeria, from inception to date.
Ogbeni Aregbesola further said the Ministry of Interior has ‘’registered more than 2,000 companies while over 12,000 expatriates have been given permits to work in Nigeria.‘’
The minister who spoke at the 6th edition of KADINVEST, noted that this year’s theme which ‘’Toward a Knowledge-based Economy’’, is very apt because there is a paradigm shift in the concept of production.
Aregbesola pointed out that in the industrial age, businesses are sited close to the sources of raw materials but this has changed in the knowledge-based economy, which emphasizes knowledge, skills and competitiveness.
This minister who said that he has more than an ordinary interest in Kaduna, revealed that he did his National Youth Service Corps in the town, met his future wife there and married her in the same town.
Aregbesola called on investors to invest across the various sectors in Kaduna state, including agro-allied industries, light manufacturing, mining, information commucation technology and housing amongst others.
He said that Kaduna’s ‘’ strategic role as the navel of the northern political configuration or architecture, the navel of its bureaucracy, and the navel of its industrial base, even before El-Rufai came on board, and the amazing work that Nasir El-Rufai has been doing, it is impossible to refuse to come for KADINVEST.’’
The minister praised Governor Nasir El-Rufai whom he described as his brother, for ensuring that Kaduna is kept clean, adding that ‘’sanitation of the environment sign-posts the development of the area.’’