Okezie Ikpeazu, Abia state governor, has called on the US government to put a “stamp of recognition” on goods produced in the state.
Ikpeazu made the call when Stuart Symington, US ambassador to Nigeria, paid him a courtesy visit on Monday.
He said the Aba industry currently has over 250,000 manufacturers engaged in the production of various wares which are of international standard.
“Once you can get your people to put a stamp of recognition to our products, it would go along way to encourage our people,” he told Symington, while presenting him with samples of Aba made products.
Ikpeazu added that with such recognition, the Aba industry would take advantage of the Africa Growth Opportunities Act (AGOA) to expand its manufacturing base.
He said Abia has more skilled persons than any other state in Nigeria — “most of whom are staying in the US”, hence his call for them to “repatriate their skills to help in the development of Abia.”
He said as part of his government’s pursuit of industrial revolution in the state, it has set out 9,000 hectares of land for the building of a new city which would host over 500 manufacturing companies.
Earlier, the US ambassador, restated his country’s commitment to promoting good governance and democracy in Nigeria.
Symington said his visit to Abia was to help build on the good relationship between the US and Nigeria.
“We understand your vision and what you are doing”, he said, adding: “the tie between us is very strong.”