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ESIPO, Nigerian Society of Engineers Unite to Empower Local Manufacturing, Enhance Business Infrastructure in Edo State

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Uwaibi acknowledged that Edo State's Ease of Doing Business Ranking had been impacted by the condition of several federal roads within the state.
By Grace-Francis Oakhiena
A momentous development is underway, poised to reshape the business landscape of Edo State, as the Edo State Investment Promotion Office (ESIPO) and executive members of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) Benin Chapter came together on Thursday, July 20, 2023, to embark on a groundbreaking partnership. The objective? To revolutionize the local manufacturing sector and uplift crucial business infrastructure in the State.
Engr E Ojegba, the Chairman of NSE, expressed the NSE’s deep interest in aligning with Governor Obaseki’s administration to bolster the socio-economic impact of his programs and policies, particularly in areas within the NSE’s expertise. He emphasized the NSE’s extensive network of professionals across Africa and underscored the partnership’s potential in supporting investors in the construction, manufacturing, and production sectors, thus significantly contributing to the Edo economy.
Mr. Kelvin Uwaibi, the Managing Director of ESIPO, echoed his enthusiastic support for the potential collaboration, emphasizing the significance of close cooperation between the private and public sectors for optimal effectiveness. He stated, “I’m impressed with what you want to do with the state. I will say we love a situation where there is closer collaboration. I’m excited about what you want to do, and I assure you of our maximum cooperation.”
Addressing the pressing issue of infrastructure, Uwaibi acknowledged that Edo State’s Ease of Doing Business Ranking had been impacted by the condition of several federal roads within the state. He added, “Our ranking was poor because of our federal roads. We have information that some contractors, some of whom will likely be your members, have been awarded these roads, so we want you to use your connections to confirm who these contractors are and hold them accountable.”
Uwaibi also urged engineers in the state to explore more cost-effective methods and contribute to the government’s efforts in building durable and resilient roads. He noted that despite the challenges with Federal roads, the State is determined to complete several ambitious projects, such as the Benin Port, nearing completion of the Edo Dry Port, and a partnership with the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) to boost local manufacturing within the Benin Enterprise Park.
Engr. Osayamen Airhunmwude, Chairman of the Business Investment and Innovation Committee of NSE Benin, further emphasized ESIPO’s vital role as the focal agency dealing with businesses in the state. He said, “ESIPO has a key role to play in supporting investors in construction, manufacturing, and production sectors in the state, sectors the NSE is convinced can contribute significantly to the Edo economy.” Airhunmwude noted that the NSE recently empowered indigenous contractors in the state, highlighting that as the foundation for the partnership with ESIPO.
Airhunmwude also unveiled exciting news about the NSE’s planned exhibition in Benin, the Edo Engineering, Construction, Manufacturing, and Innovation Exhibition (ECOMINE 2023). Scheduled for September, the maiden edition of ECOMINE 2023 will host 1000 investors, many from outside the state. He said the exhibition presents an exceptional opportunity for ESIPO to showcase its investment opportunities to capable investors.
With regard to the forthcoming exhibition, Uwaibi reiterated ESIPO’s commitment to attracting investment and promoting economic growth. He warmly endorsed NSE’s initiative and encouraged them to extend invitations to partners from around the world, ensuring the exhibition’s resounding success. He stated, “Your exhibition is coming at the right time; let’s look for the right synergy to make sure it is a huge success because you have our backing on this. Invite the world to it. Invite all your partners from all over the world, Edo is ready.”
The strategic partnership between ESIPO and NSE marks a significant milestone for Edo State, promising to unlock new opportunities for local manufacturing, stimulate economic growth, and elevate the state’s infrastructure to greater heights. This collaboration aims to cultivate an environment where businesses can thrive, attracting both local and international investment, thereby solidifying Edo State’s position as a key player in Nigeria’s thriving economic landscape.
Also in attendance at the meeting were Engr Faith Ewanehi, co-opted member NSE, Engr Chukudi .M. Akpotowho, Chairman International Affairs Committee NSE, Engr Mrs. Peggy Ohikhare, Chairman MFD, NSE, Osaze Ogbomo, Team Lead ESIPO, Nefisat Oare Dirisu , Team Lead Aftercare and Interministerial Affairs, and others.

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