Fourteen Nigerian states are seeking foreign direct investments up to $15 billion from businesses and organisations from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and will be pitching their proposals to investors at the forthcoming 11th Annual Investment Meeting (AIM) in Dubai. The AIM meeting is being organised by the UAE Ministry of Economy and is scheduled for March 29 and 31.
“The gathering will provide delegates of the 14 Nigerian states opportunities and ideal channels to share and promote investment opportunities in their respective states,” said Abdullateef Shittu, the executive director in charge of strategy at the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) secretariat in Abuja.
The NGF, an association of the 36 Nigerian governors, has been working with the UAE Embassy in Nigeria to ease participation at the forum by Nigerian states.
Mr Shittu said the delegations from the participating states will promote Nigeria as an attractive investment and trade destination, showcase existing investment opportunities and provide leads that can be converted to investments.
Details obtained by our correspondent listed the states that will be wooing investors at the forum to include:  Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Cross River, Edo and Ekiti. Others are: Enugu, Kwara, Niger, Ondo, Plateau, Sokoto and Yobe.
Key projects for potential UAE investors
Delegates of the aforementioned participating states, some to be led by their governors, will be convincing potential UAE investors to invest in key and capital-intensive projects across sectors — infrastructure development, manufacturing, agriculture, energy, technology, transportation and logistics, tourism and hospitality, education and finance.
For instance, Abia State will be seeking $1 billion (N416.25 billion by the current official market dollar-naira exchange rate) for Enyimba economic city development ($288 million), leather and garment city project ($300 million) and Abia State special agro-processing zone development project ($450 million).
Similarly, Akwa Ibom will try to convince potential investors at the meeting to bring in a total of $2.6 billion into the Ibom Deep Seaport, Ibom Industrial City Project, Ibom Science Park and Industrial City, agribusiness and construction of jetties infrastructures in the state.
Bauchi, Bayelsa, Cross River, Edo, Ekiti and Enugu states will seek $88 million, $2.3 billion, $3.5 billion, $1.1 billion, $104.5 million, and $160 million respectively for maritime projects, agriculture and infrastructural developments across the states.
Likewise, the governments of Kwara, Niger, Ondo, Plateau, Sokoto and Yobe states will be telling potential investors to consider bringing in $97 million, $184 million, $2.5 billion, $33 million, $388 million and $910 million respectively for the implementation of projects in the agriculture, hospitality, infrastructure and mining sectors in their respective states.
Potential UAE investors
At least 74 potential UAE investors have signified intentions to engage with the delegations from the 14 Nigerian states, Mr Shittu of the NGF said.
They include the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, African Development Bank, National Marine Dredging Company, Islamic Development Bank, Al Ain Farms, Strata manufacturing, TVM Capital Healthcare, Amea Power, MENA Infrastructure, Dubai Investments, Investment Corporation of Dubai, Mubadala, Gazprom Bank, Jumeirah Group, Kotak Mahindra Asset Management Group, the Saudi Fund for Development, VTB Capital, MENA Tech Fund, among others.
Organisers say delegates of the Nigerian states would be allotted time to make presentations to investors. Arrangements have also been made for the delegations to hold pre-arranged meetings with officials of the UAE Ministry of Economy, members of the AIM investors hub as well as participants in the Arab country’s global investors programme.
This, the organisers said, will give participating states “the ideal stage and opportunities to strengthen and improve their country’s national brand within the global community and among relevant potential investment partners, and the international investment community.”

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