Mbah In Austria, Signs Pact On SMEs, Others

Mbah In Austria, Signs Pact On SMEs, Others

Enugu State governor Peter Mbah has taken his investment drive to Vienna, Austria, where he held high level meetings with senior government officials, the business community and international development partners. He signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the development of the state.

The governor, who seeks to grow the state’s economy from $4.4 billion to $30 billion in four to eight years through private sector investment and strategic partnerships, met with the Austrian minister of interior, Gehard Karner, minister of labour and commerce, Dr. Martin Kocher, minister of agriculture, Norbert Totschnig, managing director of the Austrian Promotional Bank, Bernhard Sagmeister, director-general of the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), Michael Spindelegge, parliamentarians, among others.

They expressed their readiness to collaborate with the state government for the mutual benefits of both parties.

At the meeting with Karner, Mbah and his host agreed to partner on various sectors with opportunities in Nigeria for Austrian SMEs.

As a way of starting a fruitful relationship, Mbah and Karner signed an MoU on behalf of their respective governments for the establishment of a K-9 training unit in Enugu to boost security and crime detection.

Mbah’s meeting with Totschnig dwelt on the implementation of an agricultural model region, measuring about 2,000 to 5,000 hectares, and replicating the Austrian cooperative success story in Enugu State.

At the talks with Kocher, the governor said his administration expressed readiness to help expand collaboration between Austrian and Nigerian businesses, especially in the areas of agriculture, hydro power, work and knowledge in semiconductors, possibly leveraging the already existing Austrian business presence at the European Business Park, Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu.

“Enugu is open for business. We are your trusted partner for business in Nigeria and a stepping stone to Austrian businesses looking for a foothold in Africa,” he said.

The MD of the Austrian Promotional Bank (Sagmeister) said the bank was already supporting some Austrian businesses investing in Enugu State.

Sagmeister said the bank was interested in exploring more opportunities to provide guarantees, including guarantees for credits from Nigerian banks, for Austrian businesses investing in Nigeria and equally assist the Enugu State government to design creative approaches to procuring foreign funding.

Governor Mbah also toured the Spittelau waste incineration plant, which handles 250,000 tonnes of municipal refuse annually and generates a large proportion of electricity for powering the city of Vienna.


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