Dangote Canvasses Expansion Of Non-Oil Sector

By Okey Muogbo

The President and Chief Executive of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, has stressed the need for Nigeria to diversify her economy by expanding its non-oil sector.

Speaking as special guest at the third edition of the Kaduna Economic Investment Summit (KADINVEST) in Kaduna, Dangote said: “Given the capricious nature of crude oil prices, Nigeria must quickly take advantage of the prevailing window of opportunity to diversify its economy.”

Dangote who was represented by the conglomerate’s Group Executive Director, Engr. Mansur Ahmed, said that the gradual recovery of the Nigerian economy in the last few months was an opportunity for all tiers of government to create the enabling environment and attract massive inflow of private capital and know-how to the country.

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He contended that the biggest challenges facing the economy were job creation, pervasive poverty and youth unemployment.

The business mogul further argued that if other regions with relatively less problems were working hard to attract investment, the North must work twice as hard because it is far behind, trailing the South in virtually all economic and social development indicators.

He said: “A lot clearly needs to be done by the northern states to reduce poverty and create opportunities, especially for the youths to earn decent income.”

The Dangote Group has set in motion investment programmes aimed at improving the economy through the cultivation of 130,000 hectares of sugar cane in Niger, Taraba, Adamawa and Nasarawa States directly and via out-growers. It is also cultivating about 10,500Ha of tomatoes in Katsina, Niger, Zamfara and Adamawa States and another 150,000 hectares of rice across six northern states while billions of Naira had been committed to improving the lot of Nigerians through the Dangote Foundation – the largest charity organisation in Africa with an endowment of $1.2billion.

The business mogul lauded the great strides of Kaduna under Governor Nasiru El-rufai which has led to the inflow of investments and commitment of investors in commercial, agriculture, light manufacturing and agro- processing sectors.

“KADINVEST is a clear indication of the value the Kaduna State government places on the private sector as an engine of growth, wealth creation and employment generation.

“Kaduna State has potential to become the regional engine of growth,” he said.

In his goodwill message to the summit, President Muhammadu Buhari said that his administration was a witness to the concrete and productive outcomes of KADINVEST since its commencement in 2016.

Source: authorityngr.com

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