A Netherlands company, Dutch African Agricultural Projects, is set to invest the sum of N144billion ($400million) in various Agro-allied products in Kogi State.
Coordinator of the Project, Mr Bert DeJong, told Kogi State governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, that the team from the Dutch firm were in the state to invest the sum of $400, 000 in dairy ranch programme, milk production, onions, sesame seed, rice and others.
According to DeJong, 60 per cent of the agricultural products produced my farmers in Nigeria waste as a result of lack of preservation, adding that the firm will address wastage and shortages experienced by most farmers.
Assuring that the team will place utmost priority on the needs of host communities, he noted that 30 per cent of returns from the project will be invested into social projects that would add value to the lives of the community members.
DeJong said the project has the capacity to create 12,000 direct jobs for the people of Kogi State and another 25,000 to 30,000 indirect jobs for other Nigerians.
Receiving the Netherlands team led by Senator Smart Adeyemi yesterday at Government House, Lokoja, Governor Bello said the team’s vision in the area of agricultural investment is in tandem with his administration’s agricultural revolution.
Bello stressed that the project was a welcome development and that his administration will go all out to support the team to make the project a reality.
He assured the team that Kogi state is safe for investments of all sorts, as insecurity is no longer an issue of concern in the state.
“My administration’s core value is in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s agenda. He has vowed to revive agriculture and others; he is doing well and Kogi State government is following in that direction.
Governor Bello noted that his government also has keyed into Mr President’s efforts in the area of job creation and diversification of the economy, saying since the project can create thousands of indirect and direct job opportunities for the people of the state, the state government will give its full commitment.
Governor Bello who applauded the team for siting the first phase of the project in Kogi State noted that the state is blessed with human and fertile arable land that could yield huge returns for the investors.
In his remarks, Senator Adeyemi said Governor Bello’s zeal and determination to transform the socio-economic development of Kogi State informed his decision to encourage the team to come invest in the state.
Adeyemi said the last economic summit held by the state government was an eye opener which exposed the potentials of the state to the outside world, stressing that the team is willing to kick start the first phase of the project in Kogi in few weeks.
While assuring the team that Kogi State is one of the safest states to invest in Nigeria, he added that the Governor Bello’s passion to rapidly transform the economic fortune of the state and improve the wellbeing of the people deserves the support of all and sundry to make it a reality.