General Electric (GE) has revealed plans to begin the construction of an engineering manufacturing plant at the Calabar Free Trade Zone in Nigeria
The decision to build the manufacturing unit follows the conclusion of GE’s agreement with the Nigerian government in January 2013.
Calabar Free Trade Zone general manager Sadiq Kasim said, “Work on the site of GE’s engineering manufacturing plant will commence as soon as other formalities are adressed. We have given them land and very soon their engineers will mobilise to site and start work. They will be committing about US$1.6mn for the first phase.”
Nigerian minister of information Labaran Maku described the GE project as “unprecedented”, adding that Nigeria would soon become the hub for GE’s operations in Africa.
According to a report in Nigeria's Business Day, Kasim claimed that the plant would be designed for the manufacture of generator turbines for power plants, coaches for trains, engines for aircraft as well as hospital equipment, among other products.
Kasim said that the project would create jobs for approximately 300 Nigerian engineers and technicians and a technology transfer programme to benefit Nigerians.
The Calabar Free Trade Zone will accommodate 25 companies, employing a total of more than 5,000 workers directly and 1,000 others indirectly. Monthly internally-generated revenue of the zone has been estimated at between US$510,000 and US$640,000.
Aligning with Nigeria’s goals for growth through its Vision 2020, GE has signed a landmark Country to Company agreement aimed at fostering partnerships and driving critical infrastructure projects across the country.
With more than 200 employees and facilities on the ground, GE has been committed to supporting the country’s growth in various sectors such as healthcare, energy, transportation and aviation.