INDUSTRIALIZATION OF ONDO STATE MADE POSSIBLE BY AKETIκ
Ondo State before the assumption of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu was strictly a civil service state. The state could barely boast of any operating industry before Aketi became the helmsman of the Sunshine State, but the story has changed now. In only three years of Akeredolu’s administration, Ondo State can now boast of an industrial hub that houses 15 different companies.
The industrial hub is Public Private Partnership arrangement between the government of Ondo State and
Linyi City in the Shanghai Province of China. This initiative has given birth to what is today known as
Ore industrial park where 15 major companies have either resumed production or at various stages of completion. The industrial park is an integral city that is offering quality service and an enabling business environment which is stimulated with ultra-modern facilities and infrastructure. The park is strategically positioned to become one of Nigeria’s premier economic industrial zones.
The industrial pack came into existence after a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Ondo State government and the Linyi Municipal Republic during the visit of the state governor, Rotimi Akeredolu to China. The Governor actually signed six different Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Linyi Municipal Republic in China and the attendant results are quite applaudable. Some of the companies that have sprung up at the industrial park are the Cassava/Ethanol Plant, Agrochemicals, Papermills factory , Medium Density Fiber Board, Plantation, Textile Industry and We-wood.
The Cassava/Ethanol Plant need 300 to 400 tons of cassava on a daily basis. What this means is that cassava farmers in the state will have a ready market at the plant.
With an estimation of about one million tons annually, the cassava to ethanol plant would also afford the state the huge opportunity to key into the Federal Government’s initiative of cassava off-takers. Naturally, the plant is providing a window of employment opportunities for the youths in the state. Moreso, the required one million tons of cassava every year translates to more money for cassava farmers in Ondo State and the company is even prepared to assist cassava farmers in getting multiple harvests yearly.
The Ore industrial hub has already rewriting the history of the state industrially and setting it on a right footing. Over10,000 workers have been engaged already by companies in the hub; apart from contractors working on construction projects at the Park. However, about 20,000 direct and indirect jobs are expected to get generated when the hub begins operations at full capacity.
Besides the companies that are already operating at the industrial park, two other companies are set to begin operations. One of the companies will engage in milk production while the second one is setting up a motor assembly plant. These are major feats achieved by Akeredolu in just three years. The
motor assembly plant will be first of its kind in the country as various parts of automobiles would be imported for assemblage at the park.
Experts that will man the motor assembly plan have already been trained, while serious construction work is also ongoing on the plant site. Without doubt, the two new companies are expected to contribute massively to the development of the state and provide huge job opportunities for the people. Another commendable effort of Aketi in making the industrial hub a reality is a solid security arrangement at the Ore industrial park. An assurance had also been secured by the government of Governor Akeredolu to ensure that welfare of workers in the companies would be made a priority with the payment of their salaries as and when due.
The hub is equally designed to have
a training centre, to be called the African College of Agriculture Vocational and Technical Studies. The facility will be made available for the training of all persons that are interested in acquiring the needed manpower technology.
Meanwhile, other operational concerns of companies in the industrial hub include wood processing, textiles, exploration and agriculture. The textile mill is now producing sewing thread, polyester embroidery and fabrics suck as lace and ankara. There is also a wood mill where plywoods are being produced and an agro-allied chemical company which will soon begin operation.
The industrial hub located at
Omotoso, on the Benin/Ore expressway in Odigbo Local Government Area of the state clearly portrays hope of a better future for Ondo State. In all of these, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu has done very well by by putting Ondo State on the industrial map of Nigeria.