GOVERNOR Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State has indicated the state’s willingness to share ideas and collaborate with the United States on matters of development.
Ugwuanyi made the declaration during a courtesy visit to Government House, Enugu, by the American Ambassador, Mr Stuart Symington, noting that the latter’s visit offered an ample opportunity to build a stronger and mutually beneficial working relationship with the United States.
The governor noted that the desire of his administration to diversify the state’s economy and attract foreign direct investment in the face of the current economic challenges had made a closer collaboration even more imperative.
“We have in this respect, continued to invest heavily in all areas including security, infrastructural development, environmental improvement, expansion and regularisation of social services etc, that we believe, would help sustain a conducive environment for business investments to flourish in the state,” he said.
Soliciting the assistance of the US Embassy in Nigeria with regard to sensitising business organisations in the United States on the potentials within Enugu State, as well as facilitating their entry into the state as investors, the governor explained that his administration had listed for commercialisation or privatisation, over 17 potentially lucrative state-owned companies and industries dealing in diverse areas of business and production.
“Beside this, we solicit the direct assistance of the United States government in the development of some critical sectors of the state’s economy such as education, healthcare, agriculture and security especially through the provision of modern communication equipment and other gadgets.”
Governor Ugwuanyi stated that the presence of an international passenger and cargo airport and the establishment of a Free Trade Zone in Enugu as well as the urbanisation initiatives of the government, were additional incentives that gave a boost to the state’s economic profile.
He further assured the US envoy that whatever commitment or investment made by the United States government or organisations from the country in Enugu State was guaranteed to yield desired dividends and satisfy the interests of all parties involved.
Noting that he was in Enugu to acquaint himself with the people’s culture, Ambassador Symington said he was keen to strengthen the ties between his country and Nigeria and also work towards ensuring that United States businessmen explored rewarding opportunities in Enugu State.