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Egyptian investors partner Kebbi on rice production



Egyptian investors partner Kebbi on rice production
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A team of International Investors from Egypt, led by Gen. Walid Soliman-Morsy, is in Kebbi State to explore areas of partnership in the production of rice and other agricultural potentials.
Gov. Atiku Bagudu, who received the investors in Birnin Kebbi on Thursday, informed them that President Muhammadu Buhari had worked so hard in the last seven years to provide an investor-friendly environment.
He said, “Nigeria has also in the period under review been operating a program, called, ‘Ease of doing business.
“This is to ensure that all the regulatory and contracts frameworks were made easier and more efficient.
“For instance, one of the largest rice mills in Nigeria, WACOT, domiciled in Kebbi state, took only 11 months from land identification to commissioning.”
Bagudu said that the proposed partnership between Egypt and the Nigerian investors is apt and timely.
He added that the move was not misplaced as the two countries had an age-long mutually beneficial relationship that would only be bolstered then.
“We will produce together, add value together, and market together as we have commonalities together.
“Nigeria’s 200 million population provides a hub for investments and marketing, so also Egypt’s vast potential and being a gateway to Middle Eastern markets.
“More is being done to make the investments environment friendlier in Kebbi and Nigeria in general,” Bagudu said.
He said that his administration had provided a conducive environment for investors to establish economic ventures in the state over the years.
Bagudu pledged to collaborate and support the Egyptian delegation for a stronger partnership in agriculture.
The governor thanked the delegation for choosing Kebbi state for their visit.
Earlier, Soliman-Morsi, acknowledged the hospitality of the people of the state, adding that the two countries would mutually benefit from the partnership.
He said his country has the potential to engage in the production and marketing of rice.
Also speaking, the President of the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Alhaji Aminu Goronyo, said that Nigeria is moving towards self-sufficiency in food production since 2021 and is taking over from Egypt as the erstwhile number one rice producer in Africa.
Goronyo added that Kebbi is the birthplace of the rice revolution in Nigeria, a sequel to the flag-off of the Anchor Borrower’s Programme by Buhari in 2015.
“In addition to the uncommon commitment of Bagudu, Kebbi is playing key roles in ensuring sustainable general food security in the country,” he said.
The Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director (CEO/MD) of EGTA Investments, Alhaji Bashir Yusuf, who introduced the Egyptian delegation to Bagudu, described the state as the home of Nigeria’s agriculture.
He said that the visit would afford the members of the delegation the opportunity to see the colossal potential for investments in agriculture.