March 1, 2024

Nigeria pledges to mentor other African countries on local content development, implementation

 

Oredola Adeola

The Nigerian Government has pledged the country’s commitment to mentoring other African countries in developing and implementing local content policies as a strategy for improving indigenous participation and value optimization from hydrocarbons and mineral resources.

 

Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote, Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) gave the assurance on Monday at the Board’s liaison office, Abuja, when he received a delegation from the Ministry of Commerce & Mines, Republic of Guinea, who had come to understudy Nigeria’s Local Content policy.

 

According to Wabote, Nigeria is ever ready to support other African nations. He also confirmed that other African nations like Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda, and others have benefitted from Nigeria’s guidance on local content.

 

He noted that the Board would continue to provide similar support to any interested African nation that requests its assistance. He added that the Board’s objective is to extend local content practice across the content, in line with the Sectorial and Regional Market Linkage Pillar of the Nigerian Content 10-year strategic roadmap.

 

He described the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFA) as a revolutionary agreement that promises broad collaboration among African nations, deepening trade among the 1.3 billion Africans, helping to create investment and job opportunities.

 

The NCDMB’s boss charged African countries to consider the comparative advantages of member nations and take advantage of capacities that have already been developed in other countries, rather than replicating similar facilities.

 

The Executive Secretary urged the Guinean delegation to remain committed to the implementation of local content policy, describing it as a long journey, which would require strong political will from their leaders and the development of tools, processes, communications strategies, and stakeholder engagements.

 

He recalled that Nigeria introduced the policy when the local content level was less than 5 percent in 2010 and the local supply chain lacked the capacity to execute critical projects in the country, which resulted in most of the opportunities going to expatriate personnel and companies.

 

He informed that the enactment of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act and the focused implementation in the past 12 years have resulted in the growth of in-country capacity to 54 percent at the end of 2022.

 

Mr. Saifoulaye BaldeExecutive Director of the Bourse for Subcontracting and Partnering in Guinea (BSTP), who was the leader of the Guinean delegation, in his remark stated that the team would spend days with the NCDMB team to learn about the Board’s implementation models and pick up ideas they can implement in their jurisdiction.

 

According to him, Guinea had a booming mining sector, which was dominated by expatriates, with little local content input. He conveyed his country’s desire to increase indigenous participation in their nation’s mining sector and deepen value addition.

 

Balde underscored the history of cooperation between Nigeria and Guinea and hailed Nigeria for becoming a reference point in Local Content in Africa and beyond.

 

Alhaji Abdulmalik Halilu, General Manager, Planning, Research and Development, NCDMB, while corroborating the ES NCDMB’s statement revealed that the Guinean team would be taken through the Board’s core operations and models in research and development, projects certification, capacity building, and funding.

 

He noted that the essence is for the delegation to identify successful programmes of the Board that can be transferred and implemented successfully in their jurisdiction.