Osinbajo tells African countries to invest in non-oil sectors
.Says oil resources will not guarantee future development
By Joel ThankGod & Udeme Clement (in Abuja)
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo in the middle with members of the group:
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has called on African countries to diversify their economies into non-oil export sectors, in order to pave the way for tangible economic growth and development in the future.
The Vice President made this assertion while declaring open the extraordinary session of the Council of Ministers of African Petroleum Producers Organisation ,APPO, in Abuja, yesterday, stressed that African countries need a united front for global energy discussion.
Osinbajo advised members of the group to diversify into non-oil export sectors, in order to achieve increase in economic productivity now and in the long-run expectation.
The Vice President pointed out, “Income from oil and gas should be invested massively in infrastructure and human capital for greater economic growth and development in the future”, he said.
The Vice President explained, “Tangible investment in non-oil sectors, human capital and infrastructure becomes imperative, as oil and gas resources are guaranteed as at today, but we cannot totally depend on these resources for economic growth and development in the future. Therefore, we should diversify into other sectors for future growth”.
Speaking further, Osinbajo advised, “APPO should be opened to a lot of private sector investments just like OPEC, in order to overcome financial challenges and constraints”.
His words, “Africa has no reason to fail. Though oil and gas resources are the mainstay of African economies now, there is urgent need for re-investment of gas revenue in non-oil sectors, in order to prevent economic crisis from over-dependence on oil”.
In the same vein, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Ibe Kachikwu was elected the President of APPO in Abuja.
With this latest development, Kachikwu, takes over from the out-going President of APPO, Mr. Michel Boukar officially.
Making a brief inaugural speech at the occasion, Kachikwu thanked Boukar for making meaningful contributions during his tenure, and promised to leverage on his achievements.