Senate President Ahmad Lawan

By Kazeem Ugbodaga

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has said for Nigeria to experience exponential growth in the economy, efforts must be made to strengthen the country’s local capacities particularly against the backdrop of realities that are fallouts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Lawan made this known on Wednesday at the virtual opening of the Nigerian Content Summit jointly organised by the Senate Committee on Local Content and House of Representatives Committees on Content Development and Monitoring.

According to the Senate President, the Summit which is the first of its kind as a pre-public hearing stakeholders’ engagement, seeks “to stimulate understanding on the short- and long-term implications of relevant Bills before the two houses.”

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He added that, “the Bills, including the Nigeria Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act 2010 (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (SB.417), Nigerian Local Content Enforcement Bill, 2020 (SB. 419), and the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Act, 2020 (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill 2020 (SB. 420), are obviously to increase composite value addition.

“This value addition expectedly developed from within, with the aid of local services and resources in the petroleum industry, should contribute to local capacity building, with considerations for the elements of health, safety and quality.”

Lawan while underscoring the need to develop the nation’s local capacities said, “we need to also appreciate that our social and economic conditions need continuous reviews for development, with a good quantum of home-grown fundamentals, and especially considering the new realities, brought by the Covid-19 pandemic.

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“The pandemic reminds us of the need for resource independence, the strengthening of local capacity, and the importance of increasing indigenous variables in the Oil and Gas production, and in other areas.”

“The overall aim of this is the promotion of industrialization of the nation’s all-important Oil and Gas sectors, for enhancing the wellbeing of those in the industry and the overall growth of the Nigerian economy.

“We are actually at a time for more inward reflection, through the enhancement of internal capacity, towards productivity and efficiency, for national progress. This is all to satisfy the yearnings and aspirations of the people,” Lawan added.