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Taraba to get free economic zone – NEPZA

NEPZA has announced it will soon launch a special Economic Zone in Taraba state.

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Taraba to get free economic zone - NEPZA

The Nigerian Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) announced it will soon launch a special Economic Zone in Taraba state.

This was disclosed Thursday by the NEPZA Managing Director, Prof. Adesoji Adesugba, during a meeting with Gov. Darius Ishaku of Taraba in Abuja.

READ: Buhari approves free business name registration for 250,000 SMEs

What you should know 

Taraba is home to the 3.05GW Mambilla hydropower plant project being developed on the Dongo River near Baruf, in Kakara Village of Taraba State, Nigeria.  

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Expected to commence operations in 2030, Mambilla will be Nigeria’s biggest power plant, producing approximately 4.7 billion KWh of electricity a year.

READ: NEPZA licenses 3 new Free Trade Zones in lagos

The project is estimated to cost $5.8 billion and will generate up to 50,000 local jobs during the construction phase. 

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NEPZA said the FG is working to diversify the economy and wants to boost the non-oil sector’s contributions to GDP. They added this would be done with the establishment of Free Economic Zones around the nation.

Free zones all over the world are used to accelerate development and they serve as catalysts for economic development,” NEPZA said.

READ: Senate to probe NEPZA over 14.3 billion illegal transfer

“Taraba is the second largest state in Nigeria and we shall work assiduously with the state to create the economic zones.

“I am actually pleased that the state government has created an enabling environment for businesses to strive.

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“We will constitute a working group to ensure that this is realized as soon as possible.

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READ: AfDB to support Nigeria’s agro-processing zones with $300 million 

“These special economic zones when established will help to ignite activity in the agricultural and mining sectors, and jobs will be created for our youths, while government generates revenue,” he said.

Adesugba said that the Federal Government’s position was to ultimately deepen its collaboration with relevant stakeholders – especially the private sector, in the quest to develop special economic zones across the country.

The Governor of Taraba added that the FEZ would be vital in improving agriculture and tourism in Taraba State.

READ: Power: Mambilla Power Project not prioritised by Ministry of Power for 2021 Budget – Finance Minister

We are ready to work with NEPZA in ensuring that a free zone is established in our state so that the opportunities it offers in agriculture, mining, and tourism can be explored.

“We are currently working towards expanding our Airport and that will go a long way in boosting the economic activities of the state.

“Taraba is bigger than some countries in size and has a population of over 3.6 million people. So, creating such a free zone will help mobilize our youths and turn them into productive people,” he said.

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FG says Apapa traffic will end by first quarter 2021

The FG has assured Nigerians that the gridlock in Apapa will soon be a thing of the past by the first quarter of 2021.

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IMF identifies lacking facilities at Lagos seaports 

The Federal Government has revealed that the perennial traffic in Apapa and its environs is expected to end come to an end within the first quarter of 2021.

This disclosure was made by the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Hassan Bello, on Friday, November 27, 2020, when he received the National Advisory Committee set up by the presidency on African Continental Free Trade Area at the council’s head office in Lagos.

According to a report from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Bello said that the council has put in motion, machinery to put an end to the perennial gridlock that has brought to a halt, business and socio-economic activities in that axis.

He also said that the sorting out of the gridlock and other issues in the ports and along that corridor would ensure the utilization of the benefits in the AfCFTA to the country.

The NSC boss said, “We have a deficit on infrastructure, issues in rail, road, connectivity between our ports and the hinterland and elsewhere in Africa. I am an optimistic person and that is why I want to say that by March, the first quarter of 2021, the gridlock in Apapa will disappear.’’

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“This is because we are approaching it in a scientific angle, first we have to make the ports digital and contactless, no need to go to the port to make the payment or other transaction, all these will be online,’’ he said.

Bello promised the Nigerian Ports Authority would deploy electronic call-up system to manage traffic, customs on e-customs, provisions of scanners.

What you should know

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Apapa which is a commercial/industrial hub in Lagos and most importantly has the largest seaports in the country, has been under intense gridlock as all entry/exit points leading into and out of the area are under lockdown due to construction work, which is at different levels of completion, around that corridor.

In order to restore sanity on the Apapa axis, following the total collapse of law and order due to indiscriminate parking of heavy articulated vehicles, President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated a Presidential Taskforce headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Comrade Kayode Opeifa as Vice Chairman.

The Presidential Taskforce restored some level of normalcy on the axis with the disappearance of trucks and tankers on the bridges and roads on Ikorodu road, Iganmu road, Eko Bridge and other axis leading to Apapa.

However, there have been serious concerns among stakeholders and residents in the area over the ability of Lagos state government to sustain normalcy following the withdrawal of the presidential task force.

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Exited N-Power beneficiaries to apply for CBN empowerment options

A portal to enable Exited N-Power beneficiaries apply for CBN empowerment options has been launched by the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs.

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N-power

The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management, and Social Development has launched a portal enabling exited N-Power beneficiaries to apply for CBN empowerment options.

This was disclosed by the Ministry in a social media statement on Friday evening.

READ: NDDC Probe: Akpabio accuses NASS members of getting most of the commission’s contracts

According to the press release by the Ministry, “The platform which was developed in collaboration with the CBN will enable Exited N-Power Beneficiaries to log on and apply for the various economic, empowerment, and entrepreneurship options provided by the CBN.”
The statement which was signed by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry Bashir Nura Alkali, quoted the Honourable Minister, Sadiya Umar Farouq urging interested Exited Beneficiaries of N- Power to log on to the portal and provide the required additional information for possible placements into the various CBN intervention options.
The Minister also emphasized that the NEXIT PORTAL will determine the suitability of the beneficiaries for the CBN affiliated programs.
“The NEXIT portal is to determine the suitability of the beneficiaries for the CBN affiliated programs and is dependent on meeting the criteria and conditions set by the CBN for the said programs,” she said.
Farouq pledged the Ministry’s willingness to collaborate with relevant agencies of government and other stakeholders towards the realization of that vision and congratulated the exited beneficiaries while wishing them well in their future endeavours.

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Nigeria’s University lecturers union, ASUU, calls off 8-month strike

ASUU called off its eight-month long strike that has grounded academic activities in the public universities.

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ASUU, calls off 8-month strike

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has called off its eight-month-long strike that has grounded academic activities in the public universities. The union took the decision after it agreed to accept government’s total payment of N70 billion.

READ: NCC disburses N100 million to universities for ICT Research

The was disclosed by ASUU via its Twitter handle on Friday after its meeting with the Federal Government’s team led by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige.

It tweeted, “The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has shifted ground on FG’s offer. The Union insisted that payment of outstanding salaries must not be done as through the IPPIS platform as promised, if strike would be suspended.”

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This is a developing story….

READ: FG offers N65 billion to ASUU, N15 billion revitalization fund to end strike

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