Ms Mariam Katagum, the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment has urged private investors to help Nigerian universities to design a curricular that suit their job requirements in order to create employment.

Katagum gave the advice on Monday during a panel discussion on the “Role of the Government in Creating an Enabling Environment for Investment’’, organised by World Bank Group in Abuja.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event was organised in conjunction with the Nigeria Governors Forum and Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council.

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The theme was “Catalysing Private Investments in the States’’.

The minister explained that the role of the private sector in job creation was critical, hence the need for private investors to assist universities in designing programmes and projects that met the needs of the larger society.

She said if this was done, it would help the students to have the right training.

“One of the best ways to handle this problem of unemployment is for our private investors to collaborate with universities to train the students on the right skills while they are in schools.

“We need to also focus on quality education, starting from the basic level and apart from this, there is the need to expose these school children to skills at the early stage,’’  she said

Katagum, however, decried the absence of blueprint or strategic plan for the industrialisation which had hindered investments in states.

She suggested for the establishment of Project Delivery Unit in ministries to help monitor and evaluate progress made in any project being executed.

According to her, there is a need for the state governments to work with the private sector to achieve their initiatives and programmes.

Also speaking, Prof. Ode Ojowu, a member of the Economic Advisory Council also a panellist, advocated what he termed “policy custodian in ministries’’ for both Federal and State Governments.

Ojowu said such office would help track or coordinate any policy within the ministry.

He explained that the policy custodian would coordinate the funding as well as the level of progress of any project a ministry embarked on.

Also speaking, Gov. Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State said the state government was working closely with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to revive textile industries in the state.

El-Rufai said his state known to be a hub for textile industries had lost its value, pointing out that the industry which usually created 35,000 jobs could only presently create 1,500.


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