The Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, on Wednesday said his administration would continue to prioritise and support the Integrated Produce City project and other investments in agriculture, in the state.
Obaseki said this when he received the chairman of the Integrated Produce City Project, Prof. Pat Utomi, during a courtesy visit to the governor, at Government House, Benin City.
He noted that area mapping of land for agricultural purpose is ongoing across the state, and said his administration anticipates investments from local and foreign investors.
According to the governor “the mapping of the area where the Integrated Produce City Project is being executed has been completed and the state is in talks with an Asian investor to develop an oil palm plantation development strategy in the location.
“We will support the project, we are anticipating its reality as the state has a lot to benefit from it.”
He urged the project team to kick-start the pilot phase so that farmers do not seek alternative markets.
“Farms are being cultivated across the state and it will be worthwhile if your commodity trading takes off soon,” Obaseki advised.
Earlier, Prof. Utomi said that the facility would create more than 30,000 jobs and serve as an agricultural hub.
Prof. Utomi disclosed that the team was working on the development of the infrastructure at the project site and added that the city would serve as commodity exchange centre and provide storage facilities for farm produce from neighbouring states.
“We have cleared more than 100 hectares of land, we have built offices and are creating earth roads” Prof. Utomi said.
He appealed to the governor to help construct a link road to the project site and build a security post at the facility.