Experts advocate upscaling local content development in Nigeria

By Na'ankwat Dariem

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Experts across different sectors have advocated harnessing of the  potentials in local content development to boost Nigeria’s economy.

This is part of efforts in promoting the agenda of the President Muhammadu Buhari  led administration in diversifying the country’s economy,

This was the focal point at the 5th Value chain Annual Lecture and Awards themed, “The Impact of Nigerian Content Law: Taking a Cue from the Successes in the Oil and Gas Industry”, at Abuja, where captains of industries shared experiences and ideas on aggrandizing local content development in the country.

The Chairman of the occasion, Senator Margery Chuba Okadigbo, who was represented by Professor Omowumi Iledare, a professor of Petroleum Economics and Policy Research commended Value chain for consistently educating the public through solutions journalism, by projecting the image of the country in good light.

He noted that the Local Content Law in Nigeria is a success story and an indication that the government has good initiatives towards the development of the country’s economy.

He asserted that growing revenue is not the same thing as growing the economy, and that local content is not about making people millionaires but rather, adding value significantly to the economy.

“Nigeria is contributing less than 10% from the oil and gas industry to the nation’s GDP but with a successful local content, we can be assured that Nigeria would experience about 20-30% contribution to GDP from the petroleum industry”, he added.

Speaking earlier as a panelist at the event, the Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa urged Nigerians to be advocates of local content development.

Inuwa who was represented by the National Coordinator of the Agency’s Office for Nigerian Digital Innovation, Mr. Yakubu Musa stated that it is highly imperative to look inwards in Nigeria to develop locally made goods and services.

While commending the initiative of the programme, Inuwa said, “It is important to translate the successes recorded by the oil and gas sector into other sectors while focusing on their different peculiarities”.

Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Mr  Simbi Wabote while making his remark, gave an overview of the agency’s activities, and the unprecedented milestones achieved by the oil and gas industry over the years and urged all other industries to take a cue from it, adopt their strategies and replicate them in their various industries for a collective contribution to the growth of the nation’s economy.

At the end of the event, the former Secretary General of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), late Dr. Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo was presented with a posthumous Lifetime Achievement Award among other individuals who were presented with awards for their outstanding performances in the energy sector.

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