Taraba Harnesses Non-oil Sector To Develop State
Taraba state government has reiterated its commitment in developing its Agricultural, Tourism, and Mining sectors to generate wealth and provide job opportunities for the teeming unemployed youths of the state rather than depending on oil.
Speaking during the Taraba state Special Day at the 37th Kaduna International Trade Fair, Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku said Taraba state is blessed with both natural and mineral resources as well as fertile land for agriculture, which are ready to be harnessed for diversification of the states’ economy.
Governor Ishaku also noted that in its quest for diversification, it will partner the federal government to curb illegal mining activities, develop the tourism sector – like the Mambilla Plateau – to attract tourists, and its rivers to encourage both dry season farming and fishing.
The governor, who was represented by his deputy, Haruna Manu, stressed that the state is open to both local and international investors.
“In its policy to rescue the state, we have made a policy to participate in both local and international fairs with a view to attract investors. The state is endowed with many minerals and natural resources like barite, limestone, precious stones/medals, among others, waiting to be harnessed.
“Having visited some of the pavilions, I have seen much potential. It is high time for us to look inward to develop what we have in our various states, because we have all that it takes to diversify the economy of Nigeria rather than depend on oil,” he said.
Taraba state commissioner of commerce and industry, Iliyasu Mohammed Ajibu, in his remarks said the theme of the fair, ‘promoting the solid minerals sector for sustainable economic development in Nigeria,’ is in line with the rescue mission of the state to reduce the overdependence on oil revenue due to its dwindling fortunes.
“Many countries have now discovered oil on their lands and countries are developing more environment-friendly alternative sources of energy. We therefore, cannot be said to have competitive advantage on this resources any longer. Hence, it necessitated for diversification into more sustainable resources like solid minerals, agriculture and tourism that abound in the state.
He added that the state has invigorated an export committee that would harness its abundant resources as well as add value on them to be exported, in accordance with the Nigerian Export Promotion Council’s concept, which is ‘to grow at home, and sell abroad.’
“The organized private sector will be fully mobilized and carried along in the conceptualization of ideas or policies through implementation and evaluation. This is believed to, in the long run, result in a private sector driven economy with the government restricting itself towards facilitating and creating the enabling environment.”
Earlier in his welcoming remarks, chairman, Special Day Committee, Mailafiya Abu Mada, said the fair serves as an avenue to interface with the world, so that the various potentials within the states can be showcased to the world and local investors around.