30 August 2013.
The Italian Government has pledged its support to the Bayelsa state government, praising the government of governor Henry Seriake Dickson for its commitment towards developing the state.
The Italian Ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador Roberto Colamine, pledged the Country’s support when a high powered delegation from the Bayelsa State Government led by the Chief of Staff, Bayelsa House Abuja, Chief Diekivie Ikiogha, paid him a courtesy call at the Italian Embassy, European Union House, Abuja.
The Italian government, he said, appreciates the commitment of the Bayelsa government in developing the state and its people and assured of its partnership in the area of investment in Agriculture and capacity building.
According to him “Italian firms engaged in the Manufacture of Improved Farm equipment are ready to supply tractors and allied equipment to the State as well as set up a manufacturing plant if the right environment exist”.
Ambassador Colamine also commended the Bayelsa Governor for improving the security of the state noting that though the Boko Haram crises was worrisome initially, it had not stopped major economic and commercial activities in other parts of the Country.
Italian companies, he revealed, are ready to invest in Nigeria but needed the right economic environment and legal framework in order to operate effectively.
Confirming that some Niger Delta youths are being trained in Shoe manufacturing by the Federal Government, he revealed that” Italian companies are interested in the Agriculture, manufacturing and fashion industries and are eager to transfer technology especially in fashion design and shoe manufacturing which Italians are noted for”.
The Italian Ambassador invited the Governor and his team to visit Italy to meet potential investors while pledging to visit Bayelsa state in a couple of Months.
Chief Ikiogha in his remark had stated that he was at the embassy on behalf of the Governor of Bayelsa State Hon Henry Seriake Dickson to solicit the collaboration of the Italian Government in attracting investment and development to the State. The Chief of Staff noted that though the Italian Government already has investments in Bayelsa State in the Oil and Gas Industry but that government would like more collaboration in the areas of agriculture, trade, skills acquisition and manufacturing.
He reiterated that the State would like to tap into the expertise and experience of the Italian people in shoe manufacturing in other to gainfully engage youths of the region and transfer life’s skills to them.
The Chief of Staff further called on the Italian Government to help the state tackle its environmental challenges noting that the peculiar terrain of the state as well as oil pollution occasioned by oil exploration and vandalisation of oil pipeline has thrown up enormous developmental challenges to government.
He appealed to the Italian Ambassador to support the Government of President Goodluck Jonathan and Governor Seriake Dickson by providing support to the development of the Niger Delta region and the country as a whole.
The Chief of Staff, Bayelsa House , Chief Dekieve Ikiogha was accompanied by the Senior Special Assistant to the Bayelsa State Governor on e-Media and Head of the Bayelsa House Media Team, Mr. Ono K. Akpe Senior Special Assistant to the Bayelsa State Governor on International Cooperation, Princess Mariam Onouha and Mr Kingdom Blessing, aide to the Chief Of Staff.