President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday welcomed the interest shown by the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and the Toyota Group to support projects in which Japanese companies are involved in Nigeria.
The president made his feelings known at an investment talks with top officials of Japan Bank for International Cooperation, and Toyota Group, at the margins of the Seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development, TICAD 7, holding in Yokohama, Japan.
Femi Adesina, the president’s spokesman in a statement in Abuja, said the Japan Bank for International Cooperation was led by its Deputy Governor, Nobumitsu Hayashi, at the meeting.
Mr Adesina quoted Mr Hayashi as telling the Nigerian leader that the bank had lots of resources dedicated for investment in Nigeria, and would be particularly interested in oil and gas, and investments in infrastructure.
Mr Buhari welcomed the bank, informing the team that Nigeria had introduced the Ease of Doing Business, and bureaucratic bottlenecks were being cleared off the way.
At a bilateral meeting with Toyota Tsusho, a part of the Toyota conglomerate, President/CEO of the group, Ichiro Kashitani, indicated interest in sectors like energy, healthcare and automobiles, saying Toyota would be delighted to have presence all over Nigeria.
According to Kashitani, Toyota Tsusho wishes to also build an advanced medical diagnostics centre, which will foreclose need for foreign travel to obtain cutting edge medical diagnosis.
Mr Buhari urged the group to also consider setting up a car assembly plant, noting that Nigeria had the capacity to absorb the investment for positive returns.
At another meeting with the Prime Minister of Algeria, Noureddine Bedoui, Mr Buhari counseled that the political programme in the country be faithfully executed, which would lead to general elections as soon as possible.
“Algeria is a good pan-Africanist nation, with a lot of influence over the continent,” the president said.
Prime Minister Bedoui said dialogue was in progress with all stakeholders leading to elections, hopefully by end of the year.