By Abdullberqy U Ebbo
Observable progress regarding concrete development signposts by Governor Abubakar Sani Bello in Niger state is bound to produce results, both in the immediate and long-term periods.
Immediate results have actually started in the readiness of Mainstream Energy branch of Hydropolis Nigeria Limited, an investment and portfolio management company, which has now expressed readiness to invest N200 billion(!) for industrial parks and airstrip in Niger State.
An industrial park, as the name suggests, is a park having strings and chains of businesses comprising small/medium scale to large scale businesses, from wood processing, plastic manufacturing and automobile assembly plants, to high-tech ventures, alongside several others, benefiting from and surviving in one form or another, on one another, not just in terms of raw materials sourcing, but even in the aspects of sale and distribution of final products.
A clearly massive conglomerate of businesses which promise thousands of job opportunities for various kinds of experts/professionals across fields of human endeavour, prospective Niger State Industrial Park is really bound to turn around economic fortunes of the state in the long run, as other businesses from within and outside Nigeria return to and depend on Niger State for supply and procurement of goods and services.
Alongside and to complement this clearly intimidating plan is an airstrip which is meant for minimal airplane operations, furnished with just enough facilities to assure safety of landing and takeoff.
A project which has seen the state donating entire 524 hectares of land in Kainji, Borgu local government area of Niger State, is already taking shape in Niger state(!), thanks to dogged inventiveness, focus, and community-driven vision of Governor Bello.
The state commissioner for Investment, Commerce and Industry, Hon Mudi Muhammad, while speaking during the presentation of four hilux vehicles to the state for effective monitoring of the project, explained the Industrial Park would have recreation centres, air strip, golf course, private university, among others.
As part of measures and in order to encourage investors to the state, the commissioner disclosed that tax holidays and other incentives would be granted prospective investors, expressing optimism that the Industrial Park would drive employment for the teeming unemployed youths in the state.
According to him, the move which would rebound to a massive N200 billion portfolio would assume full capacity in 10–15 years, and would equally boost the economic sector in the state, and would serve as a prelude for other investors to invest in the state.
The State Commissioner for Land and Housing also reiterated the readiness of the state to partner with any meaningful and serious investor, provided that they are going to fulfill all the requirements.
He reassured them of the state’s commitment to providing land for anyone that is very willing to partner with the State in business, assuring the governor was ever rreay and willing to make the state an investment heaven.
Project Coordinator of Hydropolis Investment, Mariam Usman, disclosed that 20 hectars land had already been acquired to resettle the four villagers in Anfani, affected by the planned development, adding the organisation has gone a long way in building social amenities that would make life comfortable for the moving villagers.
She further stated the project would include building of industries and residential buildings, which would not disallow other commercial and economic activities from taking place.
She also hoped and prayed this would be a consolidation of already existing partnership between Niger state and Hydropolis Investment.