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Abia Governor Appeals For Finance, Logistics Support From US

The governor of Abia State, Alex Otti, has requested assistance from the US consulate in advancing investment, commerce, and other initiatives that would benefit the state.

The Governor made the request on Wednesday during a working visit to the state with his team, during which he was joined in audience by Mike Ervin, the Political and Economic Section Chief of the US Consulate in Lagos.

He outlined several issues that the state, particularly the business sector, is facing, such as power, financing, and logistical support in the digital economy.

Governor Otti revealed that President Bola Tinubu’s scheduled commissioning of the Geometric power plant on Monday, February 26, 2024, will shortly put an end to the problem of electricity supply in Aba.

The Governor mentioned that Abia has over 50,000 shoe makers and is also very strong in fabrics and garment production, adding that Abia is a key commerce and industrial hub in Nigeria.

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He expressed regret that the state had previously experienced setbacks as a result of deteriorating infrastructure, but pointed out that many companies that had previously moved from Aba to other states were slowly making their way back. In the last eight months, his administration has repaired numerous state roads, particularly in Aba, the state’s commercial center.

“You can come in as the United States to assist us, if we solve the power problem, then there’s another problem which is access to finance. These days, people are running away from foreign currency funding.

“But I believe we can sit down and think out a process whereby, even if it is for the government to provide a guarantee and help against fluctuations in the foreign currency price so that our people can be sure of support that they can pay back,” Governor Otti said.

Mike Ervin, the Political and Economic Section Chief of the US Consulate in Lagos, had earlier in his speech explained that the Consulate serves the 17 Southern States of Nigeria and that their goal was to find ways to increase bilateral trade and investment as well as to guarantee prosperity between the United States and Nigeria.

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