By Victor Essang
Uyo Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mine and Agriculture (UYOCCIMA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the delegation of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce in Nigeria to improve the business sector of the state.
The MoU was signed recently during the Acadamia, Industry and Government engagement forum which took place in Uyo.
Mrs Affi Ibanga signed on behalf of UYOCCIMA, while Mrs Katherina Felgenhauer signed on behalf of the delegation of German Chambers of industry and Commerce in Nigeria.
The president of UYOCCIMA, Mrs Affi Ibanga, thanked the delegation of German Chambers of industry and Commerce in Nigeria for their interest in Akwa Ibom state.
Ibanga said the signing of the MoU marks the beginning of the bilateral relationship that will leverage the capacity and competency of the two chambers towards mutually beneficial relationship.
She maintained that the exchange of the MoU “is a major milestone in our quest to reposition UYOCCIMA to compete with our peers in the world at large”
“It is our desire to see the continuation of our joint effort to building a long term and strategic partnership between the delegation of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce in Nigeria and UYOCCIMA grows beyond our imagination and becomes a model for other chambers to emulate”, she said.
The head of the delegation of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce in Nigeria, Mrs Katherina Felgenhauer, said the newly signed MoU “means we can join hands and leaverage our respective network and capacities”
Felgenhauer pointed out, “Our core mandate is to support genuine companies and to support the Nigerian business partners to build long lasting business relationship”
While noting that they have been in the country for over 40 years, with focus on Lagos and Abuja, the head of the delegation said “our activities spand across various industries ranging from agribusiness to the chemical sector, construction and consumer goods. We are close to companies and ready to look into any sector that is of interest in Akwa Ibom” adding, “we are looking forward to expanding our activities here in Uyo”
Felgenhauer enumerated their activities to include, event, vocational training and general business development to promote German Nigerian trade and business relations
According to her, “the delegation of German Chomersindustry and commerce in Nigeria is working closely with German companies and Nigerian partners company to develop business, build skills and thereby also help to reduce unemployment in Nigeria and we are looking forward to roll out such activities in Akwa Ibom”
In a chat with newsmen, Felgenhauer said, “As delegation, in Nigeria we do not have funds to bring to the table ourself, but we bring a strong network of partners from public and private sectors that can help us activate some activities that we can jointly implement in Akwa Ibom”
In his remarks, the chairman, committee on foreign direct investment, Mr Gabriel Ukpeh congratulated both chambers for signing the MoU and pledged government support to the relationship.
Ukpeh, who gave a run down of what Governor Udom Emmanuel has done in Akwa Ibom, said the state is peaceful and has enabling environment for businesses to thrive.
On his part, the managing director, Big Dutchman, West Africa, Mr Thomas Ogundiran stressed the need to shift focus to the development of agricultural industry which he said is futuristic, adding that his organization was open for fruitful discussion on that.
Also speaking about UYOCCIMA, Mrs Susan Uko-Abasi, said the MoU will impact positively on the entire life of Akwa Ibom people.