The Governor of Borno state of Nigeria Ali Mudu Sheriff while attending the 3rd Nigeria - India Business & Investment Forum (NIBIF 2010) announced that his state would be providing free land and tax rebate for ten years to the Indian investors. Nigeria wooed investors with some freebies particularly to strengthen bilateral ties with India and also to boost its economy.
The members of the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) advised Indian investors to be wary of scammers. The NIPC urged to either go through the Nigerian embassy in India or the commission itself for any trade or investment-related transactions to avoid any fraudulent deals.
The meet which was held in Ahmadabad, the former capital of Gujarat state chiefly discussed the issues related to fictitious firms and individuals from Nigeria that swindled many Indians through fake email business offers. Ibrahim Usman Gafai, representing High Commissioner of Nigeria in India suggested not to entertain any contracts being awarded by the Nigerian government through agents or individuals.
Gafai apprized that the veracity of any contract could be established through the government’s bi-weekly magazine, which contained the detailed procedure of awarding work contracts. He further added Indian traders could also verify the genuineness of any deal through the Nigerian embassy in India.
Several people in India have become victims to email frauds that baited them to cough up thousands of dollars to win jobs, lotteries and priceless property. Majority of the perpetrators of such frauds included nationals of Nigeria and from many other African nations.
Incidentally, Amul dairy company of the Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) became the main attraction to the Nigerian delegation during the visit to India. Amul became a household name in India after it revolutionized milk supplies by taking them to the door steps of most parts of India through its large distribution network.
Reuben Kifasi, director of the NIPC said that he wanted to replicate the successful co-operative model of Amul in his country. Similarly, Mustafa Bello, executive secretary of the NIPC stated that though it would not be possible to completely replicate the model but would have to take up in phases as his country was currently importing milk powder, and any stoppage might encourage smuggling.
However, Bello admitted that Nigeria would import milk from Amul during the transition from milk powder to milk in his country. The NIPC informed that it would send a team comprising of dairy professionals and farmers to Gujarat to study the Amul model.
By Jose Roy
nigeria offers free land and tax holiday to indian investors