El-Rufai, Automotive Engineers partner on NAIDP
Kaduna state Governor, Malam Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai, has described automotive industry in Nigeria as a major sector contributing immensely to the economic growth and development of the nation.
El-Rufai added that implementing the Nigerian Automotive Industrial Development Plan (NAIDP) holistically, would in no doubt bring a desirable change in nation’s infrastructures, thereby paving way for faster national development.
NAIDP is a deliberate government effort to release a strategic and critical economy sector from the strangulating grip of dumping, to allow it grow and flourish with all the attendant benefits including massive employment.
El-Rufai, whose address was to be delivered by his Commissioner for works and transport, Engr Usman Mahmud Hassan at the 5th National Engineering conference of Automotive Engineers Institute (AEI) in Kaduna, but was eventually delivered by a Director in the ministry, Engr Ezekiel Ayuba, said government, especially in Kaduna state is ready to partner any ideology that will help the state in realising its change objectives.
According to him, “we are here for change and I want to assure you that we will be willing to peruse the communique from this conference to be guided for anticipated actions for the development of the Kaduna state which houses one of the oldest automotive factories in the country.”
He tasked the people to continue to pray and work for sustainable peace and corruption free environment for investment promotion and greater development in Kaduna and Nigeria as a whole.
Earlier in an address, Chairman, AEI, Engr. Austine Okolo, said any nation that want to move up the economic ladder should not neglect the automotive sector and with a trail of decaying infrastructures, vehicle assembly plants being a shadow of what they ought to be.
In order to effectively implement the national automotive plan, among other things, he said the establishment of automotive supplier parks and clusters where industries can share infrastructure, resources, information, knowledge and technical expertise is a must.
According to him, “the NIADP is aimed at diversifying the Nigerian economy and revenue base through industry and it is meant to increase manufacturing contribution to GDP from 4 percent today to Above 10 percent by 2017.
“The automotive sector is a prime mover that drives all other sectors of the economy and in all established economies, it accounts for at least 10 percent of employment generation, which is why the sector is not suppose to be relegated to the background,” he warned.