The Akwa Ibom government is exploring prospects of collaboration and partnership with its counterpart in the United States and other investors towards the development of the Ibom Deep Seaport project, the state governor, Udom Emmanuel, said.
Governor Emmanuel, who was represented by his deputy, Moses Ekpo, disclosed this on Tuesday when the Chief of Political and Economic Affairs of the U.S. Consulate in Nigeria, Brandon Hudspeth, visited him in Uyo.
The governor said the seaport project when developed would become the flagship of the shipping industry in Nigeria in view of its strategic location.
He said the facility was endowed with a natural draught and direct access to all parts of the world, including the U.S.
The U.S. government, the governor noted, has enjoyed a very robust bilateral relationship with Nigeria since the nation’s independence, adding that huge investment opportunities abound in the state for American investors to further harness.
“The peaceful ambience which the state offers is the best in Nigeria for investors. The U.S. government should take advantage of the enormous business opportunities, especially in the Ibom deep seaport project, which has received approval from the Federal Government.
“ExxonMobil as an American company is already enjoying the state’s favourable ambience with its presence in the state,” Mr Emmanuel said.
He urged the consulate to encourage ExxonMobil to relocate its headquarters to Uyo, the state capital as a way of encouraging other international oil companies in the country to do so.
The state government, the governor said, had invested heavily in infrastructure development that was compliant with globally accepted standard, such as the 21-storey intelligent building for International Olympic Committee.
The governor further said that his administration was people-oriented with strategic programmes designed to promote the wellbeing of the citizenry.
He commended the team for commencing its tour of the Niger Delta region with a visit to the state and wished them success during their assignment.
Earlier, Mr Hudspeth said that he was in the state as part of his tour of the Niger Delta states, described the visit as a demonstration of his country’s interest to invest in the region.
He said the visit was intended to strengthen the relationship between the U.S. government and the states in the region. (NAN)