President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday said in view of the urgent need to create more employment opportunities in the country, his government would continue to promote the diversification and industrialisation of the economy. The president dropped the hint, while receiving a delegation from one of the successful investors in the privatisation of the country's power generating companies.
He equally said government would continue to encourage investors that would support its efforts to create more jobs for qualified Nigerian youths by increasing the local production of goods and services. "The population of our young people is high. If we are unable to provide jobs for these young people, the country could face serious problems. That is why we will continue to encourage companies like yours which can contribute to the training and employment of young Nigerians," President Jonathan told the delegation from Alstom Worldwide, which won the bid for the Afam Power Plant. He restated his administration's commitment to the efficient implementation of its road-map for the development of Nigeria's power sector, saying that government would continue to ensure that international best practices and standards were maintained in the ongoing privatisation of its power sector assets.
Jonathan said he was particularly pleased that the recent bidding for some of Nigeria's power generation and distribution companies had been considered transparent and fair by the international business community. "We will continue to do more in line with globally-accepted business standards and ethics," he assured the Alstom delegation, which was led by Mr. Patrick Kron.
Kron, who is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Alstom, told the president that Alstom, which is one of the world's leading power engineering and infrastructure companies, would work with the federal government and the French government on capacity-building schemes to train more Nigerian youths in the field of power engineering and technology. Kron was accompanied to the Presidential Villa by the France Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Jacques Champagne de Labriolle, and the Managing Director of Alstom (Nigeria) Limited, Mrs. Victoria Adefala.