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LCCI, Ogun govt. to partner in establishing paper mill

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Sustain N1.97trn Q2 Trade Surplus- LCCI tasks FG

The Printing and Publishing Group of Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry(LCCI) has sought a partnership with the Ogun government in establishing a paper mill in the state.

Chairperson of the group, Mrs Layo Okeowo, disclosed this in Abeokuta during a courtesy visit to the state Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment.

Also read: Fuel scarcity: LCCI advocates fuel subsidy removal, increased domestic refining

Okeowo said that LCCI had indicated an interest in investing in the paper mill value chain in the state.

She sought the allocation of 20 hectares of land by the government as its equity contribution toward the establishment of a modern and functional paper mill in the state.

According to her, the demand for paper and related products in Nigeria has grown to more than three million metric tonnes annually.

She added that the installed production capacity had stagnated at 200,000 metric tonnes, thus making importation of raw materials and finished products inevitable.

“According to investment analysts, 4.3 million worth of investment machinery can produce 100 metric tonnes of paper per day,” she said.

Okeowo further stated that paper products were being imported with scarce foreign exchange to meet the country’s current demands due to inadequate capacity, weak production and lack of enough investment in the sector.

“LCCI’s plan to establish a modern and functional paper mill in Ogun is in line with the actualisation of the industrialisation agenda and the public private sector partnership framework of the state government.

“The establishment of the paper mill will create opportunities for inclusive economic participation as well as engender direct and indirect jobs.

“It will also support the revenue drive of the government by facilitating income and wealth creation, which will sustain the economic development outcome.

“It will also bolster the industrial profile of the state as the industrial hub of Nigeria,” Okeowo said.

She pledged that LCCI would continue to support the state government’s effort in enhancing enabling environment through public-private partnership and other initiatives that would facilitate the development of market economy and foster competitiveness.

In her remarks, the Commissioner for Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs Kikelomo Longe, expressed appreciation to the group for its resolve to partner with government by establishing the firm in the state.

Longe assured the group of government’s assistance in ensuring that the business thrived in the state.

According to her, the setting up of a paper mill in the state will further strengthen the relationship between Lagos and Ogun states and create job opportunities in the state.

 

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Economy

465 returned migrants to benefit from IOM intervention project in Edo

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465 returned migrants to benefit from IOM intervention project in Edo

No few than 465 returned migrants and community members are to benefit from International Organisation for Migration (IOM) Managing Migration through Development project MMDP 2.0 in Edo.

The two-year project would be funded by the Italian government to empower returned migrants to acquire skills and education.

The Chief of Mission, IOM Nigeria, Laurent De Boeck who made this known during the inauguration of the project on Monday in Benin, said that the first phase of the MMDP 1.0 impacted about 500 youths in the state.

465 returned migrants to benefit from IOM intervention project in Edo
Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo

De Boeck noted that the project which would be carried out in collaboration with the Italian and Edo government was designed to help reintegrate returnees into society.

He explained that the project would provide need-based economic assistance to 225 returnees, vocational training to 150 beneficiaries, and rehabilitation of 90 victims of trafficking.

He said the project would contribute to the state government’s efforts to prevent human trafficking and protect vulnerable migrants and community members across the 18 local government areas of the state.

He noted that the choice of Edo for the implementation of the project was because the state accounted for the highest figure of over 30,000 returned migrants since 2017.

“It is an honour to welcome you all to the launch of the project MMDP 2.0 in Edo. The project was developed in collaboration with Edo government.

“This launch is to introduce the project to stakeholders that are involved in strengthening the socio-economic reintegration of returned migrants and providing livelihood support for local communities.

“Edo pioneered the establishment of a state Taskforce Against Human Trafficking in 2018 with a mission to combat human trafficking and irregular migration.

“This laid the foundation for MMDP 1.0 initiated by Edo government support by the European Union and world Bank which established shelter for returnees.

“This MMDP 2.0 will first all support the development of a migration management strategy for the state. The strategy is to define a coordinated approach for Migration Management,” he said.

According to him, the intervention will not only help returnees to better integrate into the society but will also create jobs by harnessing entrepreneurial drive of migrants and community youths.

De Boeck, however, appreciated Italian government for the generous financial support to the project.

The Ambassador of Italy to Nigeria, Stefano De Leo, said that the aim of the two-year project was to support Edo government to provide skills and education to returned migrants and to prevent human trafficking in the state.

“Partnerships and networks are increasingly important tools to tackle challenges in the long term.

“I am happy to inform you that the Governor of Veneto Region, Luca Zaia, has expressed his desire to explore opportunities of partnership with Edo State.

“I will discuss further with the governor and government representatives the best ways to move forward on this roadmap,” he added.

Also speaking, Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo said that the huge numbers of Edo youths travelling abroad to seek greener pastures was due to systemic collapse which his administration has addressed in the last six years.

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Economy

Nigeria Will Meet OPEC Quota by May 2023 – Sylvia

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Nigeria Will Meet OPEC Quota by May 2023 – Sylvia

…Fails to indicate why Quota can only be met in May***

The Minister of State Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylvia has assured that Nigeria would meet the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) crude oil production quota of 1.8 million BPD by May 2023. He however did not explain why Nigeria would only meet the quota, in the very last month of this administration.

Sylvia, in a statement on Monday by his Senior Adviser, Media and Communications, Horatius Egua, highlighted this, after OPEC agreed to maintain its production cut among member countries to maintain market stability.

He said the Federal Government would continue to improve security along the tracks of the major crude oil pipelines and block every leakage through which crude oil are stolen by oil thieves and pipeline vandals.

Sylvia said that the inability of Nigeria to meet the current OPEC quota was not due to lack of production capacity on the part of crude oil producers.

He said it was because a lot of producers decided not to inject into the pipelines because they were losing a lot of their production when they inject into the pipelines.

“Once we are able to build enough confidence in the security of the pipelines, they (producers) will then be able to inject into the pipelines once again and once that happens, we will be able to meet up with our OPEC quotas.

“That is where we are going and the early signals are there that we are making very good progress.

“Our pipelines have issues and we put security structure in place involving the communities, the security, oil companies and government and we are beginning to see some early signs of improvement.

“Our production for example has improved from where we were in the past.

“We are producing over a million barrels now and we believe that when we have built confidence enough on the pipelines and all the producers begin to inject into the pipelines that have been secured, we will be able to meet our OPEC quota,” he said.

He said that with the current rehabilitation of the Port Harcourt, Warri refineries as well as the planned fixing of the Kaduna refinery and the coming onstream of the Dangote Refinery, Nigeria was sure of guaranteed crude production to ease the incessant fuel crisis.

According to him, between Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna there are over 410,000 barrels and if we have all that refined in-country that will be at least half of our consumption and with Dangote refinery which is expected to come on stream by the first quarter of next year.

He expressed hope that even before the third quarter of 2023 Nigeria should be able to exit the importation of refined products.

Speaking on the discovery of crude oil in Kolmani, a border town between Bauchi and Gombe states, the minister said Nigeria should brace up for more oil adding that only the Niger Delta region had been explored for oil despite potentials in other regions.

“Nigeria is a very prolific territory, so far only the Niger Delta has been proven as an oil-bearing territory but we have a lot of other basins within Nigeria; we have the Benue trough, the Gongola Basin, the Sokoto Basin and the Dahomey Basin.

“We have a lot of Basins that have not been proven. We are targeting to get to see how we can explore oil especially now that the world is transiting.

“We want to see how we can quickly take advantage of what we have on the ground because coal didn’t finish on the ground before the world moved on to oil but we don’t think that the world is going to wait for us,” he said.

Sylva said Nigeria would not be dealing with crude oil as only an income earner but as an economic enabler to avoid the crisis that hallmarked oil discovery in the Niger Delta region. 

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Economy

NRC Boosts Passenger- Safety With  Strong Armed Forces Collaboration 

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NRC Boosts Passenger- Safety With  Strong Armed Forces Collaboration 

 …Explains reason for increased train fares***

The Federal Government has assured Nigerians of the collaboration of the various armed forces in the country to ensure the safety of passengers and trains as the Abuja—Kaduna train service readies to resume on Dec.5.

The Managing Director, Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC), Mr. Fidet Okhiria, gave the assurance on Saturday in Abuja.

Okhiria said aside from the security personnel involvement, government had deployed technology among other things to ensure the incident of March 28, does not reoccur in the country.

“I appreciate the contributions of the Chief of Defence Staff, the Chief of Army Staff, the Airforce, and the Inspector-General of Police.

“The way they have taken up this challenge, we are confident that such a thing will never happen on our rail system again based on the attention they are paying to the track now.

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Minister of Transportation, Mr. Mu’azu Sambo,

“We are human beings and we have done our own and they’ve contributed their own. we will ensure that we will not slack.

“The government has put forth some measures and this is the best we can do for now while we continue to improve on security and safety of the train.

“The best thing is for us to open our eyes and report anything we suspect. We cannot disclose all that we have put in place as I said earlier.

“And security is the duty of everybody, you don’t need to carry guns or arms to be a security man, if you report any suspicious thing perhaps you can save lives,” Okhiria said.

The NRC boss reiterated that every passenger willing to board the train must be profiled with the use of the NIN so as to obtain the passenger’s information on the NIMC platform.

He said,” The information will be displayed, you can see it yourself. If your picture is not displayed when you put your ticket to get to the platform you cannot gain access.

On patronage, the NRC boss expressed optimism that there would be an influx of customers as passengers were eager for the trains to commence operation on the route.

“From what I have seen and from the people calling my phone, even before we tried to commence the train, people are still very enthusiastic about using the train.

Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri Rail Line to Link Abuja – Minister

“So many people have been calling to ask, when are you starting?

“But we are going to start gradually, by deploying two trains up and two trains down and we will ensure that we don’t run night for now.

“We expect that in no time, people will sit back and watch and the normal services will commence on the route,” Okhiria said.

 In the meantime, the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) has highlighted that the increased cost of diesel and other logistics would definitely be a significant determinant in the new price of train services in the country.

Mr. Fidet Okhiria, the NRC’s Boss said this in Abuja on Saturday, adding that the increase in price would be done with great consideration to the interest of Nigerians and other commuters at heart as the service cannot be halted because of high diesel cost.

Okhiria, therefore, called on its esteemed passengers to make some sacrifices and collaborate with the corporation to ensure the continued provision of the service in the country.

He said, “It is better to have it operating than not operating. it is the service we are providing but in order to provide it, everybody has to make some sacrifices.

“The major cost should be the cost of diesel. Because we require diesel to operate the trains.

“The cost of diesel has gone up by more than three times and it is costing us to mount human and material security that it requires to keep the trains operating.

“We need to service the infrastructure we put in place for the additional security we secured and the additional personnel that will be going up and down to assist; they need some incentives.

“So everybody should collaborate to ensure the trains are working because we can’t afford to fold up because we cannot buy diesel.

“So I think that Nigerians should bear with us. We are still working on the best way out.

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