FG Woos French Investors to Tackle Unemployment

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FG Woos French Investors to Tackle Unemployment
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige

FG Woos French Investors to Tackle Unemployment

 

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige has urged French investors to take advantage of the nation’s numerous resources and potentials and invest in Nigeria

Ngige made the call while receiving the Ambassador of France to Nigeria, Mrs. Emmanuelle Blatmann, and other top French Embassy officials on Thursday in Abuja.

The minister in a statement by Mr Charles Akpan, Deputy Director, Press and Public Relations in the ministry, said Nigeria wanted more Foreign Direct Investment from France to create more employment opportunities in the country.

Ngige, while commending the quantum of French investment already existing in Nigeria, appealed to France to do more, in order to boost employment in the country.

The minister, who blamed unemployment on the deteriorating security situation in the African region, said a lot of work needed to be done for people to have jobs.

He said that more Foreign Direct Investment from France would go a long way in tackling the ravaging unemployment in Nigeria and the African region in general.

“I am delighted to note that your investment in Nigeria is worth 10 billion Euros, but we need more. You can see that unemployment is ravaging our region in Africa. We will be grateful if you assist us to stabilise our region.

“We urge you to do more in agriculture, agro-industries, agriculture extension, and fertilizer production.

“We need technical assistance, to enable us to grow more cash crops. We need your assistance for vocational education, such as carpentry, welding, tiling, plumbing, textiles, bakery and confectionaries, so that more Nigerians will have jobs, ’’he said.

Ngige appealed for French partnership with Nigerian universities in the area of vocational education, which remains Nigeria’s “low hanging fruit,” for achieving economic prosperity.

He called on the French Development Agency (AFD) to work with the Skills Development Department in the Ministry of Labour and Employment in the area of vocational training.

Ngige expressed happiness with the President of France, Mr Emmanuel Macron, for informing President Muhammadu Buhari in writing of the warm reception he accorded the delegation that came to seek support for the candidate of France for the position of Director-General of International Labour Organisation (ILO).

He noted that the African Union (AU) had decided to present a common candidate, Gilbert Houngbo of Togo, but assured that if the candidacy of the AU candidate runs into turmoil, Nigeria would not hesitate to support France.

Earlier, Amb. Blatmann said they came to seek more areas of cooperation with Nigeria in the area of investment, education and vocational training.

Blatmann said she brought her team to see how the bilateral relations between Nigeria and France could be extended to the Labour and Employment Ministry.

“The youths are our main target. Our President is a youth. He believes that the fortune of the African continent lies in the youths. He lived in Lagos and Abuja.

“We have political, cultural and consular presence in Nigeria. We have about 80 French companies that invested here, employing more than 10,000 Nigerians.

“ We are engaged in educational training programmes, job creation and thereby, participating in the economic growth of Nigeria.

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“Our stock investment in Nigeria is worth about ten billion euros. It is far higher than our entire investment in all the French speaking African countries.”

She said “France sees enormous investment potentials in Nigeria and therefore, wants to participate in her economic development, adding that their investment in Nigeria cuts across the pharmaceuticals, insurance, agriculture and agribusiness.

She said her country had executed 25 projects worth about three billion euros in different states of Nigeria through the French Development Agency,

She said that they were also partnering with the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) and Petroleum Development Trust Fund (PTDF) in the areas of vocational training and post-graduate scholarships for Nigerians respectively.

FG Woos French Investors to Tackle Unemployment