CONSTRUCTION work is expected to commence soon at the Enyimba Economic City, along Aba-Port Harcourt Highway, as the Abia State Government, a Chinese largest textile manufacturer; Ruyi Group and Geometric Power Company, Aba, have signed agreements for the commencement of the new economic city, as well as roll out of uninterrupted power supply to Aba area of the state.
The agreements were signed at the Corporate Office of the Ruyi Group in Beijing, China, with the company signing three different Memoranda of Understanding to kick-start her investment in Abia State.
The Ruyi Group, which insisted that it wonâ€™t invest anywhere unless it is assured of regular power supply, signed an agreement with Geometric Power Company, Aba, as co-owners of the power generation and distribution firm.
Prof. Bart Nnaji, the CEO of Geometric Power Company, Aba, Abia State, signed the agreement with the Ruyi Group for equity investment in the Geometric Power Company to enable the Chinese firm to mobilize immediate funds for the completion and start-off of the Geometric Power Plant at Osisioma, near Aba, Abia State.
Also, Mr. C.Darl Uzu signed another agreement with the Chinese firm for the anchor investment of Ruyi Group in the Enyimba Economic City while a third agreement was signed for the promotion of greater trade partnership between Nigerian businesses and their Chinese counterparts.
Speaking while welcoming the delegation, led by the Governor of Abia State, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, the Chairman of Ruyi Group, Mr. Qiu Yu Fan expressed delight that after one year of due diligence by his company and several exchange of visits, the investment is set to come to fruition.
He noted that his company has decided to diversify her operations into Africa and they have chosen Nigeria, Egypt and Ethiopia as new frontiers and emphasised that he chose Nigeria because of the doggedness of Governor Ikpeazu.
The Chinese firm is investing in Kano, Kano State, Lekki, Lagos State and Aba, Abia State simultaneously, with Abia State enjoying greater part of the investment portfolio courtesy of the agreements with Geometrics and Enyimba Economic City.
In his response, Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, described the occasion as one of the most fulfilling in his tenure as Governor noting that his joy was that the coming investment will far outlive his administration and confirm Abia State as the new preferred destination for investment in Nigeria.
He noted that he had visited China five times in the last one year to further conversations on the workability of the investment of the Ruyi Group and expressed joy that his efforts have finally come to fruition.
In his speech, the Nigerian Ambassador to China, Amb. Baba Ahmed Jidda, assured the Ruyi Group that Federating States by Nigerian Law were fully authorised to enter into business relationships with International companies and expressed the support of the Embassy for the investment.
The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Hajiya Aisha Abubakar, confirmed that her Ministry was fully aware of the negotiations for the investment and assured of the support of the Federal Government where needed.
Present at the signing ceremony were the Group Chairman of Ruyi Group, Mr. Qiu Yu Fan, Group President, Prof. Liming Sun and other top level executives of the company.
The Nigerian delegation consisted of the Nigerian Ambassador to China, Amb. Baba Ahmed Jidda
Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, Minister of State, Industry, Trade and Investments, Hajiya Aisha Abubakar, Amb. Empire Kanu, Economic Adviser to the President, Dr. Adeyemi Dipeolu, DG Nigerian Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), Chairman of Geometric, Dr. Pascal Dozie, CEO of Geometric, Prof. Bart Nnaji, CEO of Enyimba Economic City, Mr. C. Darl Uzu and several officials of the Nigeria Embassy, Abia State Government, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investments, Geometrics Power and Enyimba Economic City.