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Agro-cargo Airport’ll transform Ogun economy – Gov. Abiodun

The Ogun State Government has continued to put preparation in top gear to deliver the international agro-cargo airport, which would be the centre for a conglomeration of agro-processing industries and aggregation point for all kinds of farm produce for local and international export, by the end of the year 2022.

Governor Prince Dapo Abiodun of the state stated this while declaring open the 11th Gateway International Trade Fair, 2022, held at the MKO Abiola Trade Fair Complex, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, noting that the construction of the airport which would officially commence operation by the end of this year, was aimed at engendering sustainable development through agricultural interventions as well as ease of doing business and access to market for agro-investors.

According to him, One of such is the trade fair organized by the Ogun State Chamber Of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (OGUNCCIMA) in collaboration with the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, mainly to create a platform for businesses to access a wider audience and network with potential partners.

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Governor Abiodun reaffirmed the State’s commitment to the economic empowerment of the people, through partnerships with private investors and international bodies that would empower farmers to boost their production and productivity and in-turn create thousands of jobs for youths, the result of which has earned the State the position of biggest producer of cassava, poultry, egg and rice in the country.

“Our efforts are in top gear to consolidate our states’ status as the industrial hub of the nation. And with the SAPZ which will be situated and operating within the agro-cargo airport metropolis, it will no doubt boost the various value-chain in the agricultural sector”, Abiodun said.

He commended the leadership of OGUNCCIMA for the numerous initiative geared towards promotion of trade, industry, commerce and agriculture with notable contributions, pledging unalloyed support to the organization in a bid to further promote commerce and agriculture in the state.

In his welcome address, the OGUNCCIMA President, Alhaji Wasiu Olaleye said the choice of the theme for the Trade Fair tagged, “Harnessing the Agricultural Value Chain for Sustainable Industrial and Economic Development” was influenced by the recognition of the effort of the present administration to raise the agricultural development profile of the state.

This, he said is evident by the numerous agricultural programs and projects embarked upon by the state for food security and industrialization of the sector, applauding government’s support, especially in providing enabling environment for socio-economic development.

In his goodwill message, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Adeola Odedina, according to the Ministry’s Press Officer, Mrs. Doyinsola Ajisebutu noted that the the administration of Prince Dapo Abiodun has delivered on its promises to make the state the investment hub of the country, which is evident in the Agric Sector, as the State is now the largest producer of cassava, poultry, egg, and rice in the country.

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“Farmers are happy that they have enormous wares to sell and industries are happy because we have young people who are supplying raw materials to their companies sustainably. This is why we have all the players on the international scene in the state, such as IFAD, OGSTEP, GIZ, ACTA, because government is determined to use agriculture to power the economy, and as such create jobs for the youths, as well as industrialize the the sector”, Odedina said.

Also speaking, his counterpart in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs. Kikelomo Longe, acknowledged that OGUNCCIMA has always been a steady partner in progress with the State government, especially with respect to industrialization and commercialization, which are critical to the success of the five cardinal points of the present administration.

While expressing gratitude to the various companies that came to exhibit at the Trade Fair, Longe said “we realize that Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are the driving force of the economy and it is our duty to support them by creating an enabling environment for them to thrive, hence our commitment to the successful exhibition of this fair, which offers MSMEs the platform to access a wider market and network with potential trade partners”.