As Nigeria intensifies efforts at boosting its economy, devastated by the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic, the Director General of Directorate of Technical Cooperation in Africa (DTCA), Mr Mahmud Adamu Yahaya has said that the recent Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN policy on Diaspora Remittances will boost Foreign Direct Investments, FDI, even as he explained that Remittances from the huge Nigerian Diaspora Community is a ready channel for Nigeria to leg-up her economy.
“Nigerian Diaspora investments when appropriately mobilized, harnessed and leveraged, holds the key to the gateway of Nigeria’s next level drive and indeed, Africa’s sustainable development.”
Mr Yahaya said this, Tuesday, in Abuja, during a One Day Workshop” Leveraging on Nigeria’s Diaspora Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for Nationaal Development.”
According to him, the workshop couldn’t have come at a better than when the negative impact of the COVID 19 pandemic on the economy of nations across the world leaves so much to be desired.
In a goodwill message, the Chairman/CEO of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, NIDCOM, Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa said, the special interest of the present administration to harness the Diaspora potential is a plus for the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) of the Federal Government.
She revealed that good percentage of Diaspora Remittances to Nigeria is consumption based. “Seventy percent (70%) of remittances are directed towards consumption and social needs while thirty percent (30%) are directed toward investments.”
She added that to maximally tap into Nigerian Diaspora potentials, NIDCOM has embarked on Data Mapping Project in collaboration with IOM, World Bank and various Consular offices at our Foreign Missions.
Speaking in a goodwill message, the Executive Secretary/CEO of NIPC, Ms Yewande Sadiku, describes Nigerians in Diaspora as represent an indomitable force. “Nigerian Diaspora are flag bearers of Nigeria’s image, Nigeria’s entrepreneurial energy, Nigeria’s irrepressible spirit and incredible can-do attitude.”
Ms Sadiku praised Diaspora Nigerians, whose remittances she said for several years have exceeded Nigeria’s oil revenues and translated sometimes as high as 6% of GDP. She also noted that” Of the 30% Remittances that is invested, the bulk of it actually goes into real estate.”
On his part, the Executive Director/CEO, Nigerian Export Promotion Council, Mr Olusegun Awolowo agreed that the Nigerian Diaspora have played significant roles in Nigeria’s development, the role he identified as promoting trade and foreign direct investment, financial remittances, skills and knowledge transfer, amongst others.
He indicated that the Nigerian diaspora is one of the largest African immigrant populations in the world, although its actual size is still not certain.