Jigawa state government has concluded plans to activate the Maigatari Free Zone located on a borderline of the state and the neighboring Niger Republic.
This is one of the key initiatives of the administration to re-structure the economy of the state, which has been under pressure as a result of the dwindling accruable from the Federation Accounts.
The market, on the trans-shipment point along the ancient Trans-Saharan Trade route was license in 2000 by the Nigerian Export Processing Zone Authority (NEPZA) and the State government has approved West African Cotton (WACOT) limited request to set up a Sesame Seed Processing Plant on the zone. This is of the moves to make the Market fully functional.
The Plant will come on stream by the fourth quarter of the year is and expected to create employment opportunities for the people of the area, as well as impact the overall economy of area.
Bello Zaki, media aide to Governor Badaru, said the new government is committed to making the Zone operational.
“The bid to actualized the Zone which has being laying idle for many years now was one of the practical move embarked upon by the administration of His Excellency, Governor Muhammadu Badaru Abubakar, to re-structure the economy of the state.
“The move to re-structure the economy base of the state is necessaited by the declining revenue accruable from the Federation Account, so the Governor is looking inwards for solution to the challenge, and making the Zone operational has been identified as one of the steady sources revenue earner for the state.
“What this implies is that, the Governor is leveraging on his private sector background and his connections with players in the sector, to make the Zone, an active source of revenue earner.
“The decision of the management of the WACOT to site a Sesame Seed Processing Plant in the Zone is an indication that the initiative of the governor has started yielding positive dividend.
“The Zone is going to generate wealth and create employment opportunities, provide sustainable means of livelihood, and reduce poverty among the populace.” he explained.
The Free Zone which covers 6.5 square kilometers has robust and modern infrastructures to support and sustain light, modern and heavy manufacturing industries targeting export market.
Facilities available in the Zone include ten prototype factory buildings completed with associated road networks, and drainages, electricity and water supply network ready for outright lease for potential investors.
The Zone also has adequate security in place, with the presence of Security Services, including Customs, and Immigration, and Military as well as Police facilities.