From the Bank of Industry (BoI) building, Governor David Umahi and his team left for The Infrastructure Bank office also in the CBD where the Managing Director, Adekunle Oyinlola and his team were already waiting to receive them.
Governor Umahi sought the assistance of the bank in the completion of the Abakaliki International Market and the 5MW rice husk power plant. He informed the bank management that the state was also planning to set up a shopping mall and asked that a team be sent from the bank to Ebonyi to assess areas that they could get involved to push the state forward.
Responding, the MD agreed to dispatch a team to Ebonyi but explained to the governor that the bank does not directly fund projects.
He said, “We don’t provide funds to states, companies and organizations. We are more of a think tank warehouse. We help to make projects in the area of infrastructure , water, energy, housing and industrial parks which you talked about bankable. We are trying to get close to governors like you. But we are happy that you are here on your own.
“Often times states and companies and organizations have project but they lack the funds to execute them. Why? It is because they are tailored in a way that they are not attractive to banks to finance.
“A lot of banks are looking for projects and investments to sponsor because they have idle funds. We can assist your state to make its projects bankable and the funds would come.”
Immediately after team left The Infrastructure Bank office, it drove straight to the ADB country office .
At the meeting with the ADB team led by the Country Director, Quasmane Dore, the governor also raised the issue of the ring road and reminded the bank that the state had asked for funding assistance.
He stressed the need to rehabilitate the road which cuts across seven out of the 13 LGAs in the state to aid farmers in moving their agricultural produce to urban cities of the state and other parts of the country.
Like he did when he visited Ogbeh, Governor Umahi, told the team about the state’s rice revolution programme and asked if the bank could assist in making this successful.
Engr. Umahi said he needed to know how Ebonyi State could key into the programmes of the ADB so that it could maximise on its vast agricultural and other minerals potential.
Disclosing to the team that the state recently signed an agreement with Ibeto Group on cement production, he added that the bank needed to assist his government in bringing in investors to tap into its large mineral deposits.
He specifically asked the bank to help the state conduct a study on salt, lead, zinc and limestone deposits. Such report, according to him, will be used to attract both local and international investors to the sector.
Before the country director responded, the governor also asked the bank to assist the state with its own equity contribution for the 5MW Rice Husk plant.
The rice husk plant was initiated to provide power to rice clusters, the Federal University at Ndufu-Alike and water plant in Ikwo, etc.
In his response, the ADB country director explained to the team that the state’s request for the reconstruction of the ring road had been included in the national borrowing plan by the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Finance.
Dore added that approval had already been given for both Islamic Development Bank and ADB to fund the ring road project.
Explaining that a team has already been assembled by the bank to visit Ebonyi for a joint inspection of the road, the bank chief promised that after the visit, they would look at co / parallel financing option since the government had started 20 kilometres of the road.
Apart from promising to help the state attract miners and other investors, Dore said that two Agriculural programmes estimated at $800m would soon be rolled out by the bank.
The programme, according to him, will involve policy development, training of youths , business development and capacity building.
He hoped that the state would benefit from both the first phase which would be executed by the ADB and NIRSAL at a cost of $300m and the second phase which is in the pipeline through the Federal Ministry of Agriculture.
The country director also promised to find out if Ebonyi State could benefit from a salt study which is being carried out by an African Resource Center.
Here are the links to all parts of the news:
– Governor Umahi’s 3-Day Abuja Economic Shuttle By Emma Anya – Part 1
– Governor Umahi’s 3-Day Abuja Economic Shuttle By Emma Anya – Part 2
– Governor Umahi’s 3-Day Abuja Economic Shuttle By Emma Anya – Part 3
– Governor Umahi’s 3-Day Abuja Economic Shuttle By Emma Anya – Part 4
– Governor Umahi’s 3-Day Abuja Economic Shuttle By Emma Anya – Part 5
– Governor Umahi’s 3-Day Abuja Economic Shuttle By Emma Anya – Part 6