The Nigerian government has sealed an MoU with investors.
Hope for the reactivation of the moribund multi-billion dollar Ajaokuta Steel complex in the near future has been rekindled with the proposed signing of a memorandum of understanding, MoU, with a host of private investors.
The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Musa Sada, said in Lokoja, Kogi State, that the Federal Government would soon sign a Memorandum of Understanding, MOU, with some prospective private investors on strategies to get the plant up and running again.
The minister, however, explained that the investors were trade partners and not core investors.
He also stated that facilities in the section of the massive steel complex that have been completed would soon commence operation.
Mr. Sada was speaking at the beginning of a three-day working tour of the company with his Ministry of Trade, Industry and Investment counterpart, Olusegun Aganga.
He said the investors would be engaged on a short-term basis to operate the completed facilities, adding that the approach is to avoid past mistakes in appointing management teams to handle the plant.
Mr. Sada said that the move would save vital components of the plant and machines from further deterioration, pointing out that the steel company workers were among the best trained in the industry.
The minister said effort to reactive the steel industry was in recognition of its very crucial role towards the attainment of industrial revolution in the country.
He said the team would also visit the mining sites in Koton Large and other communities, saying that government planned to use the sector as an alternative to diversify the economy away from oil, in terms of revenue and job creation.
The Minister of Trade, Industry and Investment, Mr. Aganga, described Kogi State as a confluence of opportunities, as it was rich in solid mineral deposits and has an arable land for agriculture, which has remained undeveloped for years.
Mr. Aganga urged the state to key in to the Federal Government’s industrial revolution plan for its potential and posterity of the citizens.
He recalled the state’s contribution to the country’s achievement of sufficiency in cement production, saying the Federal Government was banking on it to achieve the same feat in ceramic products production.
The minister, who highlighted the country’s achievement in automobile assembly plants, said also that local manufacturing of some vital motor parts would commence soon.
The state governor, Idris Wada, said he was delighted over the decision to reopen the completed parts of the steel company, pointing out that the gradual approach to the completion of the project is commendable.
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