Deputy Speaker of House of Representatives Lauds Innovation and Industrial Park, Owaza Project …AlIP


The Deputy Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Ben Kalu said the Abia Industrial and Innovation Park project is an embodiment of the very essence of economic development for Abia and the country at large.

Speaking at the occasion, Hon. Ben Kalu stated that the project represents a commitment to fostering economic growth, create job and position Abia State as a hub for innovation and industrialization.

He said that initiating the project is a testament to Governor Otti’s dedication to the betterment of the people of Abia as the event marks a commencement to a journey towards prosperity, self reliance and empowerment of the youths.

He reiterated that he is partnering with Governor Otti irrespective of political affiliation and assured in his words “I will support Governor Otti as the Governor of Abia State at the federal level to make sure that together we will be able to build a State all of us will be proud of “.

Abia State Governor, Dr. Alex Otti, OFR in performing the ground breaking ceremony of the Abia Innovation and Industrial Park (AIIP) Owaza, Ukwa West LGA made a promise to harness resources in Ukwa for the development of Abia State.

Governor Otti described the event as a watershed moment in the economic history of Abia State. According to the Governor, “The Abia Industrial and Innovation Park (AIIP) is conceived to serve as a launch pad for our economic rejuvenation, leveraging the many advantages of this location but not limited to the oil and gas deposits, nearness to Aba and Port Harcourt cities, abundance of skilled labour and a secure environment for smooth and uninterrupted production and other industrial activities.”

He assured that “All necessary approvals will also be sought for the designation of the Park as an Export Processing and Free Trade Zone. AIIP is poised to make history as the first cluster in Nigeria, where LPG, CNG, Jet fuel, PMS and Diesel production tank farms will be co-located with other supporting infrastructure for more efficient and commercial production of our own made-in Nigeria liquid fuel.” Saying that “This will help eliminate the liquid fuel scarcity problems in the country”.

Governor Otti explained that “What we have done in the last few months is to build trust amongst Stakeholders; we shall henceforth proceed with speed, ensuring that the massive goodwill this project has garnered is sustained and within a very reasonable length of time”.

Added that, “even those who doubt us would come to see that this is not just another white elephant project or a political gambit.”

He maintained that “Our vision is clear and our goal direct: we want to responsibly harness the abundant oil and gas reserves within Ukwa for the economic development of the communities within, the State and the Regions connected to this project location.”

Deputy Speaker of House of Representatives lauds Innovation and Industrial Park, Owaza Project ...AlIP

Governor Otti said that the project promises to be a win-win for every Stakeholder, and assured that “the Investors who can be certain of a conducive business environment, steady power supply, nearness to raw materials, a large population of skilled and unskilled labour, the government through improved revenue” He said that at every stage of the project, jobs would be created, local businesses would be empowered and multiple channels of economic expansion would be established for Entrepreneurs within and outside the immediate community.

He, however, clarified that the Industrial Park project is different from similar ideas and proposals presented by previous administrations in Abia which did not see the light of the day, assuring that “we come with a new assurance: in the spirit of the New Abia, things would be different this time, all that is promised would be delivered and no party shall be short-changed. At the end of this ground breaking ceremony, the bulldozers, payloaders and other earth moving equipment would go to work; you shall start seeing evidence of serious commitment on the part of the government and the concerned Stakeholders.”

On how the project would be run, Governor Otti stated that the Industrial Park “is designed to be largely autonomous, with government only acting to provide regulations and see that the terms of engagements as agreed by all Partners are respected.”

Governor Otti, appreciated the various businesses and government Agencies that have indicated serious interest to be involved in the Industrial and Innovation Park, thanked various Stakeholders for demonstrating serious commitment to the project.

He assured the host community that his government shall keep to its part of the bargain and that the people shall get what they truly deserve, adding “We shall also work with experts and industry regulators to set up clear guidelines that will drastically minimise the damages to your natural environment. Above all, we will see to it that every corporate entity that shall have a presence here takes its corporate social responsibility very seriously.”

Governor Otti, who noted that the Ukwa land has suffered untold neglect in the past two decades and more promised that “the Abia Industrial and Innovation Park shall exploit the oil and gas wealth in Owaza to drive the socio-economic development of all of Ukwa”.

The State Chief Executive used the opportunity to disclose that his administration is working on several proposals to set up agro-processing hubs in all LGAs in the State focusing extensively on what has economic advantage most within the communities.

According to him, “Our target is the International market. What we produce in our farmlands in Obingwa, Isiala Ngwa, Isiukwuato and Umunneochi, Bende, Ikwuano, Arochukwu and Ohafia will be sold in markets and malls in Europe, America, China, South Africa and across every part of the world.”

Earlier, the CEO AIIP, Chinedu Onyeizu said that the Industrial Park is “a strategic business environment for the State to build critical capacity in the areas of manufacturing, modular refineries, establishment of LPG and CNG plants”.

Mr Onyeizu, described the Governor as a pace setter, thanked him for keeping the Industrial Park on the priority list of his administration policy direction said Abia has been waiting for such an opportunity to develop the Entrepreneur spirit of the Aba man.

He explained that Industrial parks have been identified all over the world as the vehicle for propelling economic growth and urged all to appreciate it.