President Muhammadu Buhari has identified lack of employment prospects and opportunities in most rural communities as major contributor to insecurity in the country.
He said for decades, previous government policies had focused on urban development at the expense of rural inclusion.
But he said in the last four years, the APC-led government has worked hard to bridge some of the economic imbalances through its various agricultural and financial policies to attract employment opportunities to rural areas.
‘‘As we continue to expand our security operations to bring an end to these challenges, it is important to note that peace and prosperity can only be sustained if we collectively and actively support investments that take opportunities to our rural citizens.
‘‘I therefore urge our governors, bankers, investors and entrepreneurs to look beyond our cities when it comes to investments.
‘‘As we have seen from Nigeria’s five-year fertiliser revolution, if investors are willing to endure the short term ‘start-up’ pains, they will surely benefit from long term sustainable and substantial gains.’’
He assured that the Federal Government would continue to ensure a conducive business environment for investments to flourish in the country.
President Buhari, who spoke when he granted audience to Fertiliser Producers and Suppliers Association of Nigeria (FEPSAN), at the State House, Abuja, yesterday, said a new basic chemicals platform worth $1.3 billion that will produce ammonia and fertilisers will be ready for inauguration in the coming months.
According to him, the new plant will be built in partnership with the Kingdom of Morocco.
He said: ‘‘His Majesty, the King of Morocco and I, have agreed to extend the current Phosphate supply agreement between the Kingdom of Morocco and Nigeria.
‘‘We both believe that to consolidate and expand on the successes recorded thus far, we must secure raw material supplies to our blenders.
‘‘Furthermore, to improve the balance of trade between Nigeria and Morocco, the two countries have signed an agreement to develop a $1.3 billion Basic Chemicals Platform in Nigeria that will produce Ammonia, Phosphoric Acid, Sulphuric Acid and various Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium (NPK) and Diammonium Phosphate (DAP) fertilisers using Nigeria’s gas reserves.’’