President Goodluck Jonathan has expressed optimism that with the new automotive policy, Nigeria would soon be exporting cars to other countries.
The President was speaking while receiving a delegation of businessmen from Anambra State, led by the state governor, Peter Obi, at the Presidential Villa.
Jonathan also stated that if Nigeria must become great, as expected by all, the Federal Government must industrialise the country. He assured that the basic needs of industrialists, such as road, power, and port, would be addressed appropriately.
“We are totally committed to creating jobs. Nigeria is a country with huge population of youths. If jobs are not created, there will be crisis. The housing, agriculture and power sectors are also receiving attention. In the next few years, Nigeria will begin to export cars to other countries. We are encouraging government to support local manufacturers. If any country will be great, we must industrialise. If Nigeria must be a great country, we must industrialise. To this end, we will continue to encourage industrialists in Anambra,” Mr. Jonathan said.
The Vice President, Namadi Sambo, disclosed to the delegation that President Jonathan had recently approved $3.7 billion (N590 billion) to improve power transmission across the country.
The Anambra State governor told the President that Anambra people were well positioned to assist the President in the achievement of his transformation agenda because of their enterprising and preserving nature.
Declaring his support for the president, Obi said, “You have excess credit in your political account that these people (members of the delegation) are ready to pay you when you need it.”
He added that he led the delegation to express their support for the President and bring to his attention some of their collective needs which, if addressed, would help in anchoring the growth and development of industry in the state.
Some of the needs, mentioned by the governor include the completion of the 330/132/33KV power substation at Nnewi, provision of uninterrupted power supply in the Onitsha Harbour Industrial Area and Ozubulu Industrial Hub, completion of Nnamdi Azikwe Teaching Hospital, Nnewi and the inclusion of Anambra State in the rail master plan.
Obi also included the rehabilitation and reconstruction of federal roads within the state such as Oba-Nnewi-Okigwe Section 1, Nnewi-Okija, start of Onitsha Second Niger Bridge, completion of the Onitsha-Enugu Dual Carriageway and completion of Umueze-Anam Kogi Roads.
Thanking the President for the inclusion of Nnewi in the National Automotive Industry Policy of the Federal Government, the governor noted that this would attract many ancillary industries especially with the coming on stream of the Ajaokuta Steel Plant. He said the local content in vehicle manufacturing in no time would increase from 40 per cent to 60 per cent.