Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun has told a Japanese Trade and Investment Mission to Nigeria that the country is open and ready to continue to do business with the rest of the world and urged the big Japanese companies to invest in the country by setting up manufacturing plants, instead of shipping-in finished products.
The Minister stated this in a discussion with a Japanese Public and Private Joint Mission in promoting Trade and Investment in Nigeria in Abuja on Thursday. The Japanese Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs led the 32 private sector and government organisations to the Ministry of Finance for the engagement.
She said that Nigeria welcomes Japanese investors in banking, insurance, manufacturing and other sectors adding that: “We will assist you to do well. Many companies came into Nigeria and are doing very well and there is nothing to stop Japanese firms from doing very well.”
She said that the Government is vigorously working to improve the country’s business environment by investing in transportation infrastructure and has made doing business in Nigeria easier. “Specific reforms by removing lots of impediments, fiscal incentives to facilitate your coming into Nigeria to invest and drive your businesses, are being put in place,” she assured.
Mrs. Adeosun said that Africa’s biggest economy is now out of recession and wants to grow again, adding that the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) articulated by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari was designed to stabilize the economy and propel it into growth.
The Minister told the Trade and Investment Mission that the Plan envisages stabilising the macroeconomic environment, boosting agricultural production for food security, ensuring energy sufficiency, improving transportation infrastructure and driving industrialization through manufacturing.
She stated that there are opportunities for the Japanese private sector investors, especially through Public Private Partnerships (PPP) in the development of transportation infrastructure, hydropower and ports
Mrs. Adeosun expressed appreciation to the Japanese Government for supporting and executing many projects through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
Earlier in his remarks, the leader of the Mission, the Japanese Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Shunsuke Takei, said that they were on a Mission to in Nigeria as part of the efforts by the Japanese Government to actualize the US$30 billion Public and Private investment pledge made in August 2016 during the sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) in Nairobi, Kenya, which was attended by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said that given the size of the Nigerian population and market as well as its economic recovery and potential for growth, Japanese investors were desirous of investing in Nigeria, while noting challenges in the areas of security, legal and power environments.
He praised the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan of the Federal Government and expressed optimism that the foreign exchange situation would improve further.
SALISU NA’INNA DAMBATTA