South-West, South-East and South-South governors in Nigeria have pledged to explore areas of their competitive advantages in the zones to achieve economic growth and development.
The governors made the pledge at the 21st National Economic Summit, NES, Plenary Session on ‘Sub-national Competitiveness towards Economic Growth: A Conversation with State Governors.’
The governors also discussed measures to increase the contribution of each region to national output.
They also set economic agenda and leveraged on each geo-political zone’s competence to achieve inclusive economic growth and sustainability.
Anambra State governor, Willie Obiano said his administration had focused on four pillars of agriculture, oil and gas, trade and commerce, and industrialisation to achieve economic growth.
Obiano said that the agriculture sector had been revived in the state and that it had employed over 250 youths while over 150,000 youths had also been employed under trade and commerce initiatives.
According to him, the government has increased rice production from 80,000 metric tonnes per annum to 200,000.
“We were cultivating 80,000 metric tonnes per annum before and the consumption is 220,000 metric tonnes per annum but now, we cultivate additional 120,000 metric tonnes.
“This is possible through public and private participation in rice production.”
He said that the government’s target was for the state to produce about 15 to 20 percent of the total rice consumption of Nigeria in few years.
Similarly, Oyo State governor, Abiola Ajimobi said that his administration was working on taking the advantage of having the largest land mass within its zone and largest research institutes to boost its development.
He said the administration had improved on agriculture and that the state was the highest producer of cassava.
Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha said his administration focused on education, security and agriculture and pledged to improve on health care delivery.
Okorocha also stressed the need to decentralise the economy rather than depending on the federal government.
He said that communities should also play key roles in economic development.
He also urged the federal government to allow the state to venture into gas refinery, saying if that was done, he might not be coming to Abuja for money.
Also, Ogun State governor, Ibikunle Amosun said that agriculture had been repositioned to make farming attractive for the youth in the state.
Adams Oshiomole of Edo State governor said his administration had embarked on tax reforms and increased locally generated revenue.
“We have also developed the education sector and we have a law that says every child in the state must go to school. It is not about going to school but about giving the students best education,” he said.
Oshiomole added that the government was working to make Edo a power generation hub while it was also attracting a number of foreign investors into its rural-investment approach.
The theme of the summit is ‘Tough Choices: Achieving Competitiveness, Inclusive Growth and Sustainability.’

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