THE departments, agencies and parastatals under the Ministry of Trade and Investment, have pledged to create additional 3,100,850 jobs within the next three years.
This was one of the highpoints of the communiqué issued at the end of a three-day retreat organised by the ministry in Abuja.
The forum was chaired by the Minister of Trade and Investment, Dr. Olusegun Aganga and the Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Dr. Sam Ortom.
A breakdown of the job creation agenda revealed that the Bank of Industry will create one million jobs; the Department of Trade, two million jobs; and others, 100,085 jobs.
As part of the strategies towards achieving this, the departments and parastatals will develop a comprehensive backward integration programme, aimed at improving innovation and productivity for rice, sugar, wheat, yam, potatoes, starch and palm produce, among others.
According to the communiqué, the ministry will establish model industrial clusters in each geo-political zone across the country.
It said: “In line with the mandate to lead the nation’s investment, job creation and economic growth aggressive investment drive, the ministry must be refocused and repositioned in order to effectively serve as the flag and hub of industrial revolution that will help Nigeria take its rightful place in global affairs.
“In this regard, departments, agencies and parastatals under the ministry have pledged to create not less than 3,100,850 new jobs within the next three years.
“To achieve effective export promotion, participants agreed on the need for increased efforts towards streamlining the nation’s export produce and documentation as a way of facilitating trade through stronger collaboration with all relevant trade facilitation.”
Aganga pointed out that the Federal Government was committed to providing the enabling environment for job creation, wealth generation and economic growth and development.
His words: “In other parts of the world such as the United Kingdom, Japan, Indonesia and Singapore, the Ministry of Trade and Investment is the most powerful and strategic ministry in terms of driving economic growth and development.
“But in Nigeria, we have not played our roles the way we should and that is why we have not been able to harness the abundant human and natural resources in the country for job creation and wealth generation.
“If Nigeria is going to make significant progress in economic growth and development, the Ministry of Trade and Investment has to play a major role. Currently, we are working out pro-job, pro-growth policies, which will be recommended to the Economic Management Team of President Goodluck Jonathan.”
He added: “Our objective within the next three years is to significantly increase the manufacturing local content and linkages with other sectors of the economy and ensure global competiveness with manufactured goods by making made-in-Nigeria goods a major foreign exchange earner. Going forward, we intend to achieve rapid and sustained economic growth by broadening the nation’s productive base.
“With a population of over 150million people, we consider ourselves highly privileged to be in a position to influence policies, create jobs and implement policies that will positively affect the lives of Nigerians. We are here to serve fellow Nigerians. From what I have observed during the three-day retreat, we have what it takes to deliver on the President’s transformation agenda.
Ortom said the staff of the ministry must be dedicated to their duties if the country must achieve the set objectives.
“Now that we have a roadmap that will drive the ministry for the next four years, we need the dedication, hard work and cooperation of everybody to be able to drive the transformation agenda of the Federal Government.
“Nigerians see President Goodluck Jonathan’s transformation agenda as the last hope. We believe that with God on our side, we will be able to create three million jobs within the next four years,” he added.
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