Mr Edobor Iyamu, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, says investors from Greece will set up a ship-building outfit in Nigeria, especially in Niger Delta.
Iyamu made this known to State House Correspondents shortly after a meeting with a delegation of Theo-Man Limited, a Greek firm, on Thursday in Abuja, and said that the company would also train ex-agitators in fishing.
He said that the move by the investors was in tandem with Federal Government’s new vision of a forthright partnership of the Federal Government, state governments, private sector and local communities.
“We have a group of investors from Greece.
“They have come in to do a number of things in the Niger Delta region, to train a good number of the ex-agitators, to give them skills in fishing and ship-building and other benefits that will come with them.
“They partnered the Presidential Amnesty Office and the whole idea is to set up a ship-building outfit where they will be training a lot of ex-agitators in ship-building and fishing.
“This company went through the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) focus laboratory and they were rated first-star, which meant that they did very well in their rating.
“When investors begin to come to a country, it means they found the economy of that country attractive.
“It is very positive for the country that we have investors coming in to show that they believe in what this administration is doing.
“They are comfortable with the level of peace and calm in the region which has been on for a very long time,” he said.
Iyamu commended President Muhammadu Buhari for sustaining the amnesty programme and also commended Niger Delta people for believing in the administration and ensuring that peace prevailed in the area.
He said that the Federal Government was committed to ensuring that Niger Delta was transformed.
On his part, The Managing Director of Theo-Man Limited, Mr George Theodorou, said that the firm had been working on the idea for two years before coming up with a solution which they brought to their partners.
“This project consists of three parts – education of 2,500 people, construction of 100 boats and the third, management – teaching the people how to do it and we will also find the clients,” he said.
In his remarks, Mr Patrick Osobase, Chairman, Concept Amadeus, the Lead Consultant on the project, said that Memorandum of Understanding on the project was signed in December, 2017.
He said that the project would train 2,500 delegates from ex-agitators and would employ no fewer than 2, 000 of them in the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) that was being created for the project.
Osobase said that the project would last for 25 years.
“The initial phase of the project is to set up the fishing aspect of it, two boats and two trawlers with the input of the ERGP.
“We will do the building of the vessels here instead of bringing the vessels to Nigeria; the vessels will be built in Nigeria using skilled amnesty trained boat builders who have been trained all over the world.
“They will be employed in the boat building aspect of it and every other aspect of the project.
“Wherever we have people trained in that aspect under the amnesty programme, they will be absorbed into the project rather than looking for people from outside.
“We have international investors who in the first phase have invested over N25 million dollars and that is build, operate and transfer arrangement,” he said.
He said that the investors would take their time to earn their money back from the structure and at the end of the tenure, it would be will transferred.
Osobase added that it would be a win-win project for the investors and for Nigeria.