-Generates N255bn Local Investments Into Nigeria’s Economy
-Creates 40,000 Direct Jobs, 160,000 Indirect Jobs

The Oil and Gas Free Trade Zones Authority (OGFZA) has attracted the sum of $16.6bn foreign direct investment into the economy within the last two decades covering 2001 and 2020.

The Authority has also attracted the sum of N255.33bn local investments for the same period into the country.

The figures were released by the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, OGFZA, Mr. Umana Okon Umana, during a chat with Journalists in Abuja.

Umana said one of the topmost priority of the Authority was to achieve it’s financial independence. This he said has since been achieved, making it possible to sustain itself from the revenue it generates instead of depending on allocation from the Federal Government.

He said the agency has achieved great developmental strides due to purposeful and dedicated leadership as well as the commitment and exceptional quality of members of staff of the Authority.

This he said has attracted more international and local investments to the authority

The MD stated that currently, there are about N6.1bn investments that are being expected to materialize in the Liberty Oil and Gas Free Zone.

He said, “To grow investment also meant looking at the structures within our zones because as I said you can only attract Foreign Direct Investment if you are globally competitive.

“We took a number of steps, we reviewed our standard of operation, we came out with timeline for delivery of our services.

“For example, in the past we did not have a specific timeline for renewal of license or to reissue new licenses or even to process cargos.

“We came up with specific timelines – we say for example that we will take only 48 hours to clear cargos, if the cargos where consigned in Free Zones. It will take seven days to renew license when all the the requirements have been met and it will take 21 days to issue a new license when all the requirements have been met.”

In terms of job creation, the OGFZA Boss stated that the investments have been able to unlock many direct and indirect jobs thereby empowering many Nigerians.

He said, “This incentives are applied for activities within zones meaning that when they move items from the zone to any other place all the taxes will be applied.

“Between 2005-2015, the authority has created 40,508 direct jobs and indirect jobs with conservative estimate it’s about 160,000.

Okon Umana also commended president Mugammadu Buhari over the initiative and policy on the Ease of Doing Business. He said the Presidential Enabling Environment Committee (PEBEC), headed by the office of the Vice President has helped in deepening their collaboration with other agencies.

He further said that transparency and accountability in the Authority has won the agency several awards and recognition both locally and Internationally, including the PEBEC award which the agency won consecutively.