Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has stated that the State Government has developed a strong security architecture that is attracting foreign and local investors to the state.
The Governor stated this when he granted audience to the Norwegian Ambassador to Nigeria, Jens-Peter Kjemprud at the Government House, Port Harcourt.
Governor Wike informed the ambassador that more investments were being made to further improve security in the State.
“We have improved security in the state and that has given confidence to investors. We are further developing the security architecture for better security of lives and property,” he said.
The Governor added that with improved security, most shipping companies were returning to Onne Port in Rivers State to carry out their businesses.
He said that Onne Port was one of the biggest and best equipped ports in the country that would easily accommodate more ships and facilitate trade.
According to him, Rivers State Government would continue to work out ways to partner Norway, especially in the area of agriculture.
“We want to partner your government in the area of agriculture. Our focus will be fish farming to improve our economy and empower most of our people,” Wike said.
He called for greater cooperation between Norway and Rivers State.
He said that the Rivers State Government was interested in interacting with leading investors from Norway, with a view to attracting them to invest in the state.
The Governor urged the Norwegian government to open a consulate in Port Harcourt because of its strategic position in the economy of the country.
Norwegian Ambassador to Nigeria, Jens-Peter Kjemprud, said that the Norwegian government was committed to improving its relationship with the Rivers State Government in order to enhance economic growth.
He said at present, Norwegian Companies were working in the construction industry in Rivers State.
He said that if the Petroleum Industry Bill was passed, businesses woukd grow, while jobs would be created in Rivers State and other oil producing states.
He noted that 50 Norwegian Companies were working in the nation’s oil and gas sector.
The Ambassador said that Port Harcourt was the alternative to Lagos and would be patronised by investors.
On the request by the Rivers State Governor for the opening of Norwegian Consulate in Port Harcourt, he said that steps had been taken to actualize this goal.
The Ambassador invited the Rivers State Governor to Norway to interact with different classes of investors to enhance the economic cooperation between Norway and Rivers State.
Chief Executive Officer of Charkin Maritime and Offshore Safety Centre, Sir Charles Kinikanwo Wami, accompanied the Ambassador to the Government House Port Harcourt.