Imo State Governor, Sir Emeka Ihedioha, on Monday, 6 January 2020, handed over a certificate of occupancy to AfrExim Bank to construct a N60Bn export products Quality Assurance Centre at Ngor Okpala.
The ownership certificate was presented to AfrExim’s President, Prof. Benedict Oramah, who led a team of Bank officials to Government House Owerri for the ceremony.
When completed, Bank officials said the facility will become the “biggest business hub in Southern Nigeria.”
Gov. Ihedioha said he hopes the gesture will serve notice that Imo is “now home of business and possibilities … open to partnering with prospective investors for the growth of the state.”
Imo State is working hard to restore confidence of local and international investors planning to do business in the State, he said.
The Governor thereafter took his visitors to the proposed site after the certificate handover ceremony.
AfrExim plans to use the facility to provide certification and inspection services for export products for Imo and the entire region.
“This is a significant leap in our efforts to advance our State and make it a huge business hub and more importantly provide employment opportunities and boost economic development for Imo State,” an elated Gov. Ihedioha said.
Like Oliver Twist, he used the opportunity to also ask the bank to consider partnering with the state in developing tourism, constructing an entertainment village, an industrial park, a dry port, as well as rehabilitating the state-owned Concord hotel.
“We are in a hurry to maximize our potentials as the state with the highest literacy rate in the country; our government is ready and willing to provide the human capacity for any business and indeed we shall provide necessary support for the business to strive.”
Leader of the team and Bank president, Prof. Benedict Okey Oramah praised the governor for his vision and passion to develop Imo.
Noting that the bank supports governments that promote development, he said his team is impressed with the Governor’s “zeal, urgency and determination to turn Imo around” which he has shown within a few months of coming to power.
He promised that AfrExim will also partner with Imo State to establish a dry port and an industrial park not only to stimulate economic growth but to also deliver on projects that serve as an anchor to some of the initiatives they plan to do for the state and country at large.
The deal with AfrExim resulted from Gov. Ihedioha’s attendance of the Annual General meeting of the AfriExim Bank which held in Moscow from 20 – 22 June 2019.
He used the meeting to present investment opportunities in the State to international fund custodians, fund managers, investors and multilateral agencies
The discussion and agreement for construction of the N60billion facility in Imo State was started and concluded at the meeting, State officials said.