These indeed have been exciting and excruciating months considering the fact that barely 3 months after November 2019, the world witnessed a global pandemic that ultimately slowed down if not completely shut down business activities across the globe.
One of the immediate and direct impact of this global challenge was the inability of OSIPA to immediately commence operations and quickly leverage and consolidate the gains and outcomes of the widely successful, Osun Economic and Investment Summit held in November 2019.
These odds not-withstanding, we started the year 2021 with unflinching hope and determination for a speedy implementation of the renewed Osun Economic Development Masterplan with the mandated Ease of Doing Business reform agenda at the forefront resting on pragmatic and astute leadership of His Excellency, Governor Adegboyega Oyetola through whose vision the Osun Investment Promotion Agency was created.
As global economies took deliberate steps to flatten the curve of the pandemic through phased opening of their economies and borders, the odds were clearly stacked against Foreign Investments and Investor Interests with many Pre-MOU and MOU conversations put on hold due to new risk elements created by the impact of COVID-19 to the domestic and global business environments.
On our part at OSIPA, to hedge against the drop in global opportunities, over the last 6 months, we reinforced the strategy adopted in Q4 of 2020 which was to look inwards and focus on internal and domestic opportunities in alignment with the overall multi-year Post COVID-19 economic recovery strategy of the Governor Gboyega Oyetola led administration.
To make success out of this, we have committed significant attention and resources to our Government to Government engagement strategy by working very closely with sister agencies across States of the federation, the Federal Capital Territory, Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Government including development focussed Funding and Private Sector partners to unlock the opportunities available under the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan of the Federal Government; notable among which are, The Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission, The Presidential Ease of Doing Business Council, The Federal Ministry of Finance/Family Homes Fund Limited, the Central Bank of Nigeria, Bank of Industry, the Nigerian Incentive Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending(NIRSAL) to mention a few.
Some of our activities and accomplishments in the last 6 months are:
- The EASE OF DOING BUSINESS COUNCIL INAUGURATION
In April 2021, the Ease of Doing Business Council was inaugurated by His Excellency, Governor Adegboyega Oyetola represented by this Excellency the Deputy Governor, Mr. Benedict Alabi. This Inauguration had in attendance, the Special Adviser to the President on Ease of Doing Business, who also is the secretary to the Presidential Ease of Doing Business Council (PEBEC) Dr. Jumoke Oduwole whose heartwarming remark affirmed Osun’s induction into the comity of states taking leading steps to ensure the local business environment is enabling for entrepreneurship and businesses to thrive.
- SEAMLESS COLLABORATION WITH NIPC
In May, 2021, OSIPA was host to the South West leadership of the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) who visited to assess Osun for the year 2021 Investment Recertification Exercise for States which included engagements with businesses and business stakeholders operating within the state. The NIPC/OSIPA 2021 Stakeholders’ Forum was a seamless collaboration between Osun Investment Promotion Agency (OSIPA) and Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) to draw a workable investment roadmap and localised strategy to further attract investors and Investments to Osun.
- EoDB ONE-STOP-SHOP COMMISSIONING
In June, 2021, the Ease of Doing Business One-Stop-Shop located within the office building of OSIPA was commissioned by His Excellency, Governor Adegboyega Oyetola accompanied by all the principal officers and relevant members of the State Executive Council, key players in the private sector among other business partners and investors.
The One-Stop-Shop which is a co-location of all Federal and State agencies required for starting and registering a new business including the aftercare management of existing businesses has under its umbrella, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Osun Internal Revenue Service (OIRS), Nigerian Immigration Service and Nigerian Export Promotion Council who are currently operating desks serving as points of process initiation and execution of 50% of their entire end to end processes aimed at shortening the turnaround time for opening and register ing businesses, making enquiries, lodging complaints and receiving information that can boost their business plans and ideas.
- Partnership with Airtel to UPGRADE connectivity within Osun State Secretariat Abeere
For effective delivery of the Ease of Doing Business mandate, the Osun Investment Promotion Agency-OSIPA in collaboration with Osun Ministry for Innovation, Science and Technology activated its partnership with leading telecommunication company Airtel with the installation of telecommunications equipment for improved voice and data (internet) connectivity within the State Secretariat-Abere and the office of the Governor. The upgrade was launched same day as the One-Stop-Shop to enhance efficiency and productivity of staff and visitors across all Ministries, Departments and Agencies operating within the state secretariat Abeere Osogbo and environs.
- NATIONAL SOCIAL HOUSING SCHEME (Affordable Homes Project)
Through OSIPA, Osun was selected as a pilot state for the Federal Government Social Housing /Affordable Homes Project being one of the initiatives under the Nigerian Economic Recovery Programme. The project which has passed through series of due diligence stages was capped by a 2-day Stakeholder Engagement/ Education workshop organized by OSIPA and Family Homes Fund Limited/Federal Ministry of Finance as a prelude to the Roll Out of project in Osun held on Wednesday, 30th June. The workshop had delegates and representatives of all relevant Osun Ministries, Agencies and Departments which include the Ministry of Works, Lands, Justice, Education, OSPDC among others in attendance.
The Affordable Homes Project in Osun aims to deliver about 2400 housing units across 4 locations of Osogbo, Ife, Ilesha and Iwo in this first phase of the project and it is expected to provide approximately 72,000 direct and indirect jobs over the life of the project and will inject between 6-8 billion Naira into the local economy.
(6) PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP(PPP) Initiatives at various stages of due diligence
(a) Investor Interest to Develop the Osun Airport and Aircraft Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul Hanger valued at $200m USD
(b) Investor Interest to Design, Build, Manage and Operate a high capacity 100km Passenger and Freight Railway Line/Link + 26km Inner-city light rail with a scalable and phased value of about $1.5B USD
(c) Investor Interest in Waste to Wealth Project valued at $5M USD
(d) Investor Interests in State Owned Solid Mineral Assets
(e) Investor Interest in funding and Operating identified State-Owned Moribund assets
(f) Investor Interest in Modular Water Project (Initiated by the Ministry of Water Resources and Energy)
(g) Investor Interest in Hydro Power Plant Project
(h) Investor Interest in a Medical and Diagnostic Centre
(i) Investor Interest in an Alkaline Water Production Plant
21st June, 2021:
Osun moved 11 places up in the Subnational Ease of Doing Business Ranking from 26th position to rank 15th among the 36 states and Federal Capital Territory in the released Subnational Ease of Doing Business ranking. The survey which was conducted by the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council(PEBEC) chaired by the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, had its methodology framework developed by KPMG and the PEBEC-NEC(National Economic Council) technical working group including representatives from the nations six(6) geopolitical zones included the NEC secretariat, Nigeria’s Governor’s Forum, the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics, the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission, the Nigerian Export Promotion Council, the Nigerian Economic Summit Group and other Private Sector representatives.
These could not have been achieved without the strong support we have received till date from all the arms of government most especially the principal officers in the Executive arm of Government and the State House of Assembly. The handholding from the offices of the Chief of Staff and the Deputy Chief of Staff, the Head of Service and all members of the State Executive council.
I would like to conclude by saying that as an agency, we are deeply committed to making a difference and pushing ourselves beyond expected limits to ensure that the mandate of His Excellency Governor Adegboyega Oyetola is delivered for the benefit of the people of Osun. We are well aware that our assignment can only be rated successful when clear testimonies are visible in the lives of businesses operating within the state which automatically reflect in the quality of life of the people. We will continue to move the needle and work collaboratively with all Ministries and departments of government to ensure the vision of the administration is realised.
Osun in Open for Business! Let’s do more!
Chief Executive Officer(Special Adviser to the Governor)
Osun Investment Promotion Agency-OSIPA
July 22, 2021