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…Four more underway in oil states—FG
Barely eight months after the South East, South South Governors’ Forum (SESSGF) met in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital as part of the regions’ build to greater socioeconomic collaboration, the Federal Government has disclosed that it has concluded arrangement to establish five oil and gas parks in five oil producing states.
The programme kicked off weekend at Emeyal-1, Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.
The governor led by the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Udom Emmanuel had signed a communiqué made available to journalists in Port Harcourt including Business Hilights South South Bureau chief, saying rather than spending fortunes setting up oil and gas related ventures far away from oil states, it has become imperative and governors of the region have adopted that henceforth, every oil and gas related investment and infrastructure of the federal government must be located within the oil producing states.
In his remarks during the ground-breaking of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Park being developed by the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, observed that the Emeyal-1 project will be the second to take-off, adding that a similar ground-breaking event was held early March at Odukpani, Cross River State. The other sites are located at Oguta in Imo State, Ikwe-Odio in Akwa Ibom State as well as in Delta State.
The Minister further noted that the move by the Federal Government to develop other similar projects in other parts of the country was to extend the benefits to more Nigerians states.
Kachukwu averred that “We will work with the board and provide everything that is needed for the projects. After the development of the five pilot parks in the Niger Delta states, we will extend this innovative idea to other parts of Nigeria where oil has either been found or is being explored.”
According to him, “The park will generate about 2,000 jobs when it begins full operation and create a regional low-cost manufacturing hub that will produce equipment components and spare parts to be utilised in the nation’s oil and gas industry.
In his view, “this initiative will send a message to investors that Bayelsa is ready for oil and gas business and drive home the point that the park will bring about localisation of indigenous companies where fabrication, pipe milling, procurement hubs and oil and gas related technologies will flourish.”
Earlier in his welcome address, the Executive Secretary, NCDMB, Mr. Simbi Wabote, observed that the, “park occupies a total land mass of about 25 hectares, which will comprise various warehouses, manufacturing shop floors and factories, training centre, hostels, administrative block, mini estate, security posts, fire station, including truck parking and holding areas.”
Industry analysts say setting up of oil and gas parks remains one of the fastest facilities that can lift the region away from abject poverty as it is characterized by job creation and sustainable development of host corridors.