A Nigerian firm, International Limited, has said it will spend over N98billion ($273million) on strengthening local content and human capacity development in the country, particularly in the oil and gas sector.
Speaking with The Guardian in Abuja, Monday, Managing Director of the company, Sunny Eromosele, also urged the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), to focus on bridging the huge gap in local content, especially technological know-how instead of investing in modular refineries.
As part of the investment, to span a 10-year period, Eromosele said Mudiame, an ISO 17025 accredited testing, calibration, and inspection company, is nearing the completion of its Mudiame University, located in Irrua, Esan, Edo State. Its primary focus will be to address human capacity challenges impeding the growth of local content in the oil and gas, and manufacturing sector in Nigeria.
He argued that Nigeria’s core challenge in the area of industry development is not unconnected to human capacity development and technology.
He therefore called on NCDMB, charged with boosting local content development to focus on investing in technology, human capacity and general development rather than investing in refining.
He identified lack of infrastructure and technology to develop local content among the most critical challenges undermining indigenous participation in the oil and gas sector.
He noted that countries like China, and Germany have industry standard, but Nigeria do not, a situation that forces project developers to come with their own standards, thereby compounding the industry’s problems.
Though Eromosele lauded government effort in ensuring that local content development stays in the oil and gas sector, he insisted that investment in human capacity development has been lacking.
He decried lack of government support for the organisation, adding that the company’s efforts are not being appreciated, as most requests made to the NCDMB remained unattended to for years.