By Emmanuella Anokam
Abuja, July 24, 2020 The Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) has tasked Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) to leverage its One Stop Investment Centre (OSIC) lab and planned deployment of Single Window Investment Portal (SWIP) to stimulate investment.
NIPC Executive Secretary, Yewande Sadiku made this known on Friday in Abuja at its Closed Webinar on `Supporting Sub-National Investment Promotion’ organised exclusively for state IPAs.
The SWIP project is expected to help NIPC leverage the capabilities of information and communication technology to automate critical aspects of its operations and ensure effective delivery of its mandate.
Sadiku said that the SWIP project and OSIC lab simplified business entry processes by removing administrative bottlenecks in doing business.
She said that through these, all the IPAs could facilitate better investor relationship management.
The IPAs, according to her, are responsible for investment promotion function and facilitation in the states, and can leverage NIPC’s schemes to boost investment.
“Eighty per cent of IPAs are involved in negotiation of investment agreement, they can leverage NIPC’s work on the reform of Nigeria’s International Investment Agreement (IIA) regime.
“IPAs involved in investment climate reforms can work with Enabling Business Environment Secretariat (EBES)/Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) on subnational ease of doing business.
“Sixty-six per cent of IPAs involved in export and Special Economic Zone (SEZ) administration require a deeper relationship with Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC) and Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA),’’ she said.
Speaking on the mandate of state IPAs, the executive secretary said they were responsible for providing entry support services, management of requests and intervention with Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
Sadiku called for promotion of investments into the priority sectors of the state, domestic enterprise and value chain development, including negotiation of investments with investors on behalf of the state government.
According to her, investment climate reform will aid in implementing policies and programmes to improve business environment.
She said other mandates of the IPAs include export promotion, industrial park and SEZ administration, and incentive administration.
The NIPC boss listed agriculture, manufacturing, education, mining and quarrying as well as real estate activities as focus sectors to attract domestic and foreign investments by IPAs.
She said that Nigeria had rich arable land and adequate capacity for irrigation farming, and also aspires to be West Africa industrial hub.
“There is huge deposit of variety mineral deposits across the country with limited domestic value processing and huge demand for residential and industrial complexes,’’ she said.
She listed other focus sectors as arts, entertainment and recreation, construction, transportation and storage, water supply, sewerage, waste management, electricity, gas, information and communication among others.
NIPC will in August publish on its website, the Book of State, a document aimed at stregthening investors engagement and promoting insight into States competitiveness advantages.
Meanwhile, the IPAs pledged to work with NIPC to promote the opportunities in their states, while it is expected that others would sign off on the book of states.
Some of the IPAs also called for support like training and capacity building of their staff by NIPC.