People Digest Online –
The federal government have started a business development initiative aimed at attracting about $35 billion annual remittances from Nigerians in Diaspora for direct investments in Nigeria. The initiative, being spearheaded by the Bank of Industry (BOI) and the Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and the Diaspora, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, aims at providing a guide to Nigerians in Diaspora who want to invest in the country by giving them necessary information, technical assistance and capacity development.
Signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to seal the initiative with Dabiri-Erewa in Abuja yesterday, the Acting Managing Director of the BOI, Mr. Waheed Olagunju, said Nigerians living abroad remit between 20 to 35 billion dollars annually for various purposes in the country, including investments. Olagunju said in the past, Nigerians in Diaspora had been defrauded in their efforts to invest in Nigeria, adding that the new initiative would serve as a transparent roadmap to genuine investments in Nigeria.
He said the initiative would also help to link local entrepreneurs and investors with Nigerians living abroad for business collaborations and issues relating to imports and exports. Dabiri-Erewa said from her interactions with Nigerians living abroad, they want to invest in Nigeria but some of them do not know how to go about it. She said the initiative is a structured approach to investing in the country, proving a platform for big and small investors to come in and do genuine business in Nigeria.
The Special Assistant to the President also said the initiative would also help Nigerians in Diaspora to get funding in Nigeria to set up their businesses. To drive the initiative, the BOI has set up a Diaspora desk with a designated portal for easy communication with Nigerians in Diaspora.