By Chris Chimezie
A team of foreign business firms willing to make direct investment in critical sectors of Ondo State economy has arrived and are discussing with stakeholders before taking final business decisions.
The investors from Japan and South Africa are looking at areas where the Sunshine State has huge resource base for development in Solid and Liquid Waste, Water Supply Project, Industrial Park, Power Project, Entrepreneurship and Vocational Training and Agric Business with its integrated value chains.
During a joint courtesy visit to the Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, the Chief Representative of Japan International Cooperative Agency, (JICA), Nakamura Hirotaka said his team was ready to invest in the Sunshine State in view of the state’s avanlache of resources.
Hirotaka mentioned the area in which JICA would like to partner the state government to include the development of agriculture, health, power sectors as well as sinking boreholes to reduce water scarcity in some areas of the state.
On her part, the Group Chief Executive Officer of South African Investment Company, Moleboheng Mo’ Malti said the integrity of the governor coupled with the abundant deposit of mineral and natural resources in Ondo State attracted her company, adding that such potentials, when harnessed, would make the state the investment destination of choice in Nigeria.
She stated that the company is interested in bringing vocational training and improving the state’s educational standard by introducing advanced technology.
Mo ‘Malti added that they are interested in the state Women Ministry with a view to empowering women and youths, and reiterated the commitment of her Company to project Ondo State to the world as an investment destination, by partnering with it in areas of tourism, health, agriculture, technology and education.
Responding, Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN), expressed his administration’s readiness to partner with credible investors to scale up the socio-economic capacity of the state, hence the investment missions.
The Governor who noted with satisfaction the desire of the investors to explore the potentials of the state in diverse sectors including water resources, tourism, power, agriculture, health, youth empowerment, technology and waste management and promised to key into them for socio-economic development of the state.
‘We know the assistance these investment missions have given us. Among them are boreholes by JICA scattered throughout the local government areas.
“Ondo State is ready to work with you. The state has great untapped potentials like mineral deposits.
“We are also trying to establish technology hubs all over the state, so technology is what we want to use to propel even our educational growth as we want to move on.
Tourism is not only about recreation, we could have health tourism because most Nigerians know that health facilities in South Africa is slightly better than here, because it is run in a better way and more modern.
Dignitaries at the business visit include; JICA Project Formulation Advisor, Takayuki Ohira, a member of the South African Investment Company, Vincent Manle, Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Hon Ifedayo Abegunde, Chief of Staff to the Governor, Chief Olugbenga Ale, Chairman, Ondo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (OSOPADEC), Hon Gbenga Edema and Mr Oyedeji who represented the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Commerce.
Others are Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Development and Investment, Mr Boye Oyewumi, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Agric, Pastor Akin Olotu, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information, represented by the Ministry’s Acting Permanent Secretary, Mrs Julie Fayehun, General Manager, Ondo State Electricity Board, Engr Oluwadare Adeloye, General Manager of the state Water Corporation, represented by Mr S. O Adesemoye, General Manager, Ondo State Waste Management Authority, Mr Ayo Mesileya, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on ICT, Mr Akinkugbe, the Facilitators of the visit, Messrs Tope Runsewe and Ayodeji Sotinrin.