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February 23, 2024
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Mr David Greene, Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S., Embassy in Abuja during an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)

U.S. applauds Nigeria’s efforts at bolstering its economy for sustainable growth

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By Fortune Abang

The United States has applauded Nigeria for the efforts it is making to bolster its economy towards ensuring sustainable growth and development.

Mr David Greene, Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. Embassy in Abuja, who gave the applause, acknowledged the Federal Government’s efforts in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).

He said although the Federal Government is putting measures in place to stabilise the nation’s economy, more should be done to create an environment that would attract investors to the country.

He observed there has been great enthusiasm from American investors toward Nigeria, saying that such interest was a testimony to the commitment that the President Bola Tinubu administration has made toward strengthening the economy.

“We support the fact that the Tinubu administration is trying to create the fundamentals that will allow foreign direct investment, attract investors, and drive economic growth.

“We are also doing our part as the U.S. government to observe and understand the challenges, see how we could help, and presumably, talk up Nigeria a little bit in the global market and international markets.

“When Tinubu was in New York at the UN General Assembly, where he rang the closing bell at the world’s second-largest stock exchange, the National Association of Securities Dealers Automatic Quotation System (NASDAQ).

“His visit attracted officials of the Commerce of Cooperation of the U.S. Trade and Investment.

“They demonstrated a high level of interest in Nigeria. Sponsored by Prosper Africa Programme, a major institution of investors in the U.S., set to manage billions of dollars of Pension Funds.

“They were there because everybody knows Nigeria is a place of great potential. So, I think that potential is visible; I think people are excited. There is a high level of interest.”

He assured Nigeria of the U.S. government’s commitment to doing all it could to draw investors to the country to see the opportunities available and possibly, rely on partner businesses.

He emphasised the need for the Federal Government to create an environment conducive for businesses to thrive, saying that as the largest economy in Africa with 60 per cent of its population under the age of 25, such an environment could contribute dramatically to transforming its economy.

The envoy also gave an assurance of the U.S.’ commitment to deepening ties with Nigeria to help the country realise its economic diversification goals.

“One of the things to note is that the President Bola Tinubu administration must create an enabling environment to address the challenges that are facing Nigeria.

“This is crucial so that business operators and investors will feel more able to take advantage of the opportunities that Nigeria presents.

“When you are talking about creating opportunities and helping in supporting Nigeria, last fiscal year the U.S. provided 1.2 billion dollars to assist Nigeria across all areas.

“This includes humanitarian assistance, an enormous health programme, work to strengthen the availability of power and electricity to Nigerian citizens, transition to green energy, and up to climate issues, and improving the education system.

“The U.S. government is investing a lot in Nigeria because of the importance of these issues and to help Nigeria over the challenges,” he added.

According to him, although the U.S. does not directly invest in Nigeria, its private sector companies’ investments are not just driven by the opportunity they find, but by the enabling environment.

Greene said such companies are responsible for the in-flow of cargo investment that has positioned Nigeria as the recipient of 25 per cent of all venture capital into Africa in 2022.

He identified the companies as Microsoft, Cisco, Meta Starlink, and Google, among many others operating in Nigeria, saying they create jobs and sell products.

Also, that they make investments and train unemployed, underemployed, women and youths to find good jobs in that sector.

“U.S. has long been one of Nigeria’s leading partners. We are the largest foreign investor in Nigeria, and this is about investment in every sector of the economy.

`This is a reflection of the vast potential that Nigeria has shown economically, in terms of providing opportunities for trade, investment for profit, and job creation to improve people’s lives,” he added. (NAN)

Edited by Emmanuel Yashim

Philip Daniel Yatai

Principal Correspondent, NAN Abuja
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