The president of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote has assured that there will be light at the end of the tunnel with efforts being made by the federal government to develop other sectors of the economy long neglected in favour of the oil sector.
Speaking during a chat with members of business group who paid him a visit in the spirit of the Eid-el-Fitri, Dangote said that the situation the nation was passing through was as a result of years of over dependence on oil to the detriment of other sectors and that with the crash of the oil price in the international market the nation’s receipt also crashed leading to the paucity of funds.
He said however, the nation would come out strongly from the economic quagmire given the present government’s diversification moves which will not only reposition the country as a producing nation but also with many sources of revenue which on the long run will impact on the people positively.
Dangote however cautioned that the turnaround could not be automatic saying, “It will take time, but surely better life will come. We just have to be patient and do our own bit because government alone cannot do it.”
According to him, the current reality prevailing in the international oil market provides the best opportunity for the nation to diversify the economy, leveraging on the agriculture sector.
He also advised the state governors to take advantage just as the federal government has commenced process of diversification at the national level
Dangote stated that the northern part of the country; possess vast potentials in the field of agriculture, adding that state governments in the region must put more practical efforts to transform the sector. China which is the biggest economy today cannot boast of arable land that Nigeria has.
Dangote further reiterated his intention to create over 200,000 new jobs through some of his investments in the agric sector in the northern part of the country between now and 2018.
According to him, the Dangote Group has commenced the production of rice in Jigawa at competitive price, as part of the national quest to be self-sufficient in rice production. “Dangote Group is working to increase yield of rice per hectare from the present 1.4 to maximum 2 tonnes per hectare in Jigawa state.”