Rivers State: Nigeria’s Emerging Economic Success Story

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It is no longer news  that  the Nigerian economy  has gone into recession. All over the country, Nigerians are feeling the pangs of the economic crisis. They are eager to exit this ugly phase of the nation’s history.

Exiting this dark era which is impacting  negatively  on the livelihood of the people requires a united front where all stakeholders will pool their intellectual and natural resources to ensure that the nation is restarted for positive development to take place.


Rivers State As A Platform

Despite  being in the  opposition  in the national political space, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike,  has been  a leading voice in the move to recreate the nation’s  economy for the benefit of all Nigerians.

As such, the governor has built up the security architecture  across Rivers State for the protection  of  critical  national  assets in the oil and gas sector.  This singular  effort of Governor Wike  has ensured that pipelines  are not violated in Rivers State, with the state being the only oil producing territory  in the Niger Delta  where oil and gas activities  are taking place without undue disruptions

Therefore, Rivers State  remains the cornerstone of the nation’s  economy  as it contributes to the national wealth, when others are battling with difficult  security challenges.  This fact is known to foreign investors, hence more of them prefer to make huge financial  commitments in the state.

Importantly, Governor Wike  has created the right platform for practical Foreign Direct Investments in Rivers State, which have helped to stabilise the National Economy.

Today in Rivers State, there are strategic investments that are playing  leading roles in the economy  of Nigeria.  These investments despite the prevailing  economic challenges,  are waxing strong.

Indorama Fertiliser Plant and the Notore Fertiliser Plant. These two plants are the largest in this part of the world , playing critical roles in the revival of  the nation’s  agricultural  sector, which is the highest employer of labour in the country.

These two facilities  service about 40 million farming households across  the  country.

They have continued  to  grow because  of  the  favourable  investment  climate provided by the Wike administration.  The governor  has personally  Interfaced with the managements of the two companies  strengthening  areas of partnerships and building  their operational security  through enhanced community  relations and participation.

The governor’s  regular  personal interventions  have ensured that all high profile  business  concerns in the state are shielded from host community  conflicts that disrupt  production. Whenever a situation  arises, he steps in personally  to resolve the areas of friction so that economic  activities  will continue to flourish. That is the selling point of Rivers State  under Governor Wike, which makes it easy  for investors  to  commit their resources  in the state.

The GreenGas LNG Facility being constructed by Grenville Oil and Gas Limited in Rumuji community of Emohua Local Government Area of Rivers State is the new N140 billion project  that will add value to the economy of the country.

These international investors  have followed the footsteps of Indorama Fertiliser Plant and Notore Fertiliser Plant to help in the process of rebuilding  the nation’s battered economy.

By December 2016, the first phase of the project  will be on stream, providing  about 3500 direct jobs. It will provide in the short-term over 40000 indirect jobs across the country.

Chairman of Greenville Oil and Gas Limited , owners of GreenGas LNG Facility, Eddy Van Den Broeke said:”We are  in Rivers State to form a partnership  with the state government  for necessary  economic growth “.

He said the project covers 42 hectares  and the pipeline architecture will cover different  parts of the country, setting off a chain of investment  opportunities. At present, hundreds of indigenes and other Nigerians  are working at the project site.

He said that on completion, 750 trucks will be loading from the  facility, while it will generate 150 megawatts  of electricity  to serve Rivers State and Nigeria.

The Chairman of Greenville Nigeria Limited added that the gas produced at the  facility  will help other parts of the country produce 600 megawatts of electricity.

Governor Wike declared that the state remains Nigeria’s investment icon with the potential  of helping the country  exit her current economic recession.

He said  that the  State  is critical to any plan to revive the nation’s  economy.

He said: “Despite  the  negative  propaganda being sponsored  by opposition  politicians  in the state, investors have continued  to  troop to our State. This GreenGas LNG facility  which will serve different states in the south and North has attracted over N140billion worth of investment  to the country .

“I am happy  that our investments in the security  agencies  have continued  to  yield fruits with greater investor confidence. For us, we will continue  to provide the enabling  environment  for foreign  investors  to bring their funds to Rivers State “.

Governor Wike  said  the project has already started generating employment for the State, pointing  out  that  the  cumulative  effect when it is completed will further expand the economy  of Rivers State.

He urged the people of  Rumuji community  to cooperate  with  the  investors as they will always benefit  from  the  GreenGas LNG Facility.

“Rivers State is key to the development of this country.  Foreign investors know this fact. There is no reason why anyone who wants to develop  the  economy of this country will ignore this State.  Today, the $1.5billionUSD Indorama Fertiliser Plant is on stream and now we are in the process of having  the N140billion GreenGas LNG Facility “, Governor Wike said.

Despite the successes recorded so far in terms of improved security  in parts of Rivers State, Governor  Wike  is not resting on his achievements.  He has acquired six additional Armoured Personnel Carriers for the  police while another 10 Grounded Armoured Personnel Carriers have been repaired for use by the security  agencies.

In addition  to  the  gunboats already acquired  by  the  Rivers State Government, Governor Wike  has commenced the process  of the acquisition of new 20 gunboats for the Nigerian Navy for the effective patrol of the state’s waterways.

To enhance  peace across all  communities of Rivers State,  Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike inaugurated the State Amnesty Programme Committee.

The committee has as members,  representatives  of the Nigerian Armed Forces, the Nigerian Police and the Department of State Services.  This committee has the responsibility  of  consolidating the  peace building  programmes  of the state government  for greater investors  confidence.

Governor Wike has created a platform  for  foreign direct investment in the agricultural sector. At present, negotiation has been completed with an Israeli firm for a multi-billion agro-project in the state.

The governor has instituted a process where foreign investors have access to large parcels of land for commercial merchanised farming, with accompanying  factories for value added production. The ultimate aim is to create employment  and further stimulate the economy.

— Simeon Nwakaudu, Special Assistant to the Rivers State Governor on  Electronic Media, wrote in from Portharcourt.

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