Tony Elumelu Foundation to Support Non-oil Exports


The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) would support the development and promotion of the non-oil export sector – through grants for completion of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) Head Office – says the Chairman of TEF and founder of Heirs Holdings Limited, Mr. Tony Elumelu.


Speaking during a courtesy visit on the Executive Director/CEO of NEPC Mr. Olusegun Awolowo on Wednesday January 15, 2014, Mr. Elumelu said his Foundation, which sets-out to build networks and develop the framework for enhancing competitiveness of African economies, was convinced that the Council – as the apex Government organization for promotion of non-oil exports needed a befitting edifice of world class standard, to function maximally and be accorded the expected reverence.


Elumelu beliefs that for non-oil export to be made a commanding economic driving force the Private Sector must learn-a-hand to the enhancement and sustainability of the sector. But he declared that a strong synergy must be established between the Public – Private Sector, even as the business of the sector should be driven through a Private Sector approach and active participation.


The Executive Director/CEO of NEPC Mr. Awolowo expressed delight for having the TEF Chairman to visit the Council – as the first guest since his assumption of office in December 2013, and more especially that the Foundation has offered to support the growth of non-oil exports. According to him, completing the Head Office complex would “make my first 6 Months in office a fulfilled one as we hope to commission this structure before May 2014 when Nigeria will host the World Export Forum in Abuja”. The Council hopes to run a side-show involving Trade Exhibition, Buyer-Seller Meetings and Conferences to compliment the Forum.


The CEO recalled that at its establishment in 1976 NEPC was placed side-by-side with NNPC (in terms of expected economic vibrancy for the country or at least the next best alternative to oil), but these hopes seems deemed – with the dwindling fortunes from the non-oil sector. Mr. Awolowo promised to draw-out proactive programmes that would attempt to rave the GDP contribution from non-oil to 30% by the end of his 4 year tenure in office.


He informed the visitors that his prime focus would be on promotion of priority export products, with the Small & Medium Scale Entreprises’ involvement and participation – all targeted at the Diaspora market.


Mr. Elumelu responded that TEF was already in partnership with USAI & Western Union for African Diaspora market place – an initiative that supports US-based African Diaspora Entrepreneurs to establish businesses in Sub-Saharan Africa, promising that NEPC would be allowed to benefit from the partnership to promote its exportable products. He further offered to contribute ideas to the Strategic Export Plan prepared by the Council, apart from getting a world class export consultant to speak at the NEPC Management Retreat scheduled for Uyo, Akwa Ibom State in February 2014.


The Chairman of TEF was accompanied on the courtesy call by Mr. Philips Oduoza Group Managing Director/CEO of United Bank for Africa, and the Chief Executive Officer of the Tony Elumelu Foundation Dr. Wiebe Boer. TEF is an African non-profit organization which was founded in 2010, as a catalyst committed to economic transformation of Africa.  

– NIDOE News posting


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