President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed the commitment of his administration to lifting Nigerians out of poverty.
President Buhari, who made this known on Tuesday when he declared open the Katsina State Economic and Investment summit in Katsina, described employment as “the quickest way to escape poverty’’.
He, however, said that for that transformation to occur, every player, including the Federal Government “must do his best’’.
“Employment is the quickest way to escape poverty. And we must lift our people out of poverty.
“But for this laudable transformation to occur, every player must do his best, including the Federal Government, but in particular, the people and government of Katsina state.
“For global players, some of whom I am pleased to see represented here, to take the deep plunge, they must be offered attractive incentives.
“The Katsina State Government appears to make I can’t refuse offer to investors through a liberal set of tax incentives, infrastructural support, faster and shorter government responses to business requests.’’
According to him, it is only through massive provision of employment opportunities that all tiers of government can reduce the level of poverty among the people.
President Buhari, therefore, commended Gov. Aminu Masari for offering attractive incentives to local and foreign investors who would subsequently provide employment opportunities to the people of the state.
He reiterated his determination to end poverty through ending corruption, broadly-shared economic growth, investing in the nation’s economy and creating jobs.
The president noted that the overall objective of the summit, was to stimulate local investment and attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to the manufacturing sector, agri-business, solid minerals, power, hospitality industry, and other services.
“Creatively and purposefully applied, these should help to bridge gaps in capital, management skills and technology, where they are most severe, and support the competences of local companies and the workforce towards world standards.’’
He said this would enable both local and foreign manufacturers and service companies alike, to stand with the best in servicing local and global markets.
According to the President, these generous offers are the minimum required to attract the critical investor who is courted in every country and region of the world.
“It is in this context that today’s Summit takes on an additional significance: APC Government of my home State has strongly embraced this vision by assembling the world to be part of this summit.
“As I said, Federal Government alone cannot deliver on the high expectations of our people.
“Katsina State Government and people have shown the way by assembling the brightest and best from the business world.
“The brightest and the best from the development partner community; the best and the brightest from MDAs and regulatory bodies.
“Katsina State is doing its part.’’
The President, however, stated that economic progress must be tailored to environmentally safe and sustainable programmes.
He said, “we should also keep an eye on the rights of the future generations who are as entitled as we are to their heritage of Nigeria.’’
He maintained that, in this regard, the Federal Government would work with the Katsina state government in rationalising such actions to avoid over-laps or discontinuities or environmental damage.
The President also enjoined the state governments to work closely with the private sector to enable them achieve “quickest, most efficient and sustainable path to industrialisation.’’
“The private sector should be the engine of economic growth; it should be the largest investor in the economy; it should be the quickest, most efficient and sustainable path to industrialisation.’’
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that goodwill messages were delivered by local and prospective investors at the event.
The event was witnessed by the governors of Zamfara, Kano, Lagos and Sokoto states as well as other dignitaries.
Gov. Aminu Masari of Katsina State also announced the allocation of land to one of the prospective investors, who pledged to begin the construction of Tomato paste company within the next three months of the allocation.