Investment in Onne Free Trade Zone hits $6bn

Eight years into its operations, about $6 billion has been invested in the Onne Oil and Gas Free Trade Zone, Rivers State, where about 30,000 workers, including indigenes, are gainfully employed.
Speaking when the National Good Governance Tour visited the port at the weekend, Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, said that the free trade zone initiative has attracted 150 companies.
He noted that the Federal Government established free trade zones to attract foreign investment to the country; create employment and transfer skills to indigenes of the locations.
The Minister commended the employment opportunities created through the scheme.
He said that, like China, Nigeria was adopting free trade zone to grow the economy.

Maku noted that the Onne industrial centre has attracted ship building companies and other investors, adding that the activities have a multiplier effect on the economy.
Meanwhile, the Omoku Power Plant in Rivers is to commence operation in December 2013.
The power station, which has the capacity to generate 250 megawatts of electricity, was embarked upon by the Federal Government under the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP).
It has attained 81 per cent completion.
Project Manager, Rockson Engineering, Basil Uzoh, who disclosed this when the National Good Governance Tour team visited the project site, explained that the power plant would be run on gas to be sourced from Agip Gas Plant.

He noted that the plant was designed as a simple cycle power plant with two units and has total capacity of 252 megawatts.
According to him, the power will be evacuated on two transmission lines built by the state government.
He said: “The Rivers State Government has built a transmission line from here to Port-Harcourt. There will be an interconnection between the power plant and that of the state government.
The transmission line is already existing and we will connect it with additional three towers that areto be built.”
He explained that, because gas turbines have a high temperature exhaust, the company intends to use it to generate steam to enable it run a turbine that can produce 125 megawatts of electricity in future.
On the project, Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amechi, said that the state has four power plants while building additional two to meet power needs of the oil-rich state.



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