The governor of Enugu State, Peter Mbah, while hosting the British High Commission to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery in Enugu, has appealed to the United Kingdom government to return the British Council and the British Visa Facilitation Center to Enugu.
Currently, Enugu and SouthEast applicants for UK visas have to go to either Abuja or Lagos.
The governor is seeking global partnerships in his government’s “ambition to transform Enugu to become a premier destination for investment, business, living and tourism”.
The UK envoy and his delegation met with the governor at the Lion’s Building – the seat of government of the state.
Mbah reminded his guests of “the historic roles Enugu had played in the history of the South and there could be no better place to site a visa facilitation centre than Enugu. So, we are looking forward to that to boost trade, investment, and cooperation between the UK and our state”.
The governor also sought the UK’s technical assistance in the areas of power, particularly renewable energy now that electricity has been devolved to subnational governments, and in making the state a special agro-allied processing zone.
Mbah said his transformation agenda wasn’t one the state could do alone. “We need partnerships”, he said.
The British envoy, Montgomery, was gracious in his response but stopped short of any commitments, however reassuring his host that, “I am here to listen, learn, and understand more about your priority and that of your new government to explore areas of further collaboration.
“I understand that very important reforms are currently being made in Nigeria, trying to put the economy back on track and a higher growth path. We hope that the South East and Enugu State will see more opportunities coming from the economy in the coming years.
“The UK is very interested in exploring partnerships on trade and investment and I have come to Enugu to understand your agenda and to explore those areas of potential partnership going forward”, Montgomery remarked.
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