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Nigeria woos billionaire Dangote, Elumelu, and others to invest in tech



The National Space Research and Development Agency, NASRDA, on Monday urged business moguls like Aliko Dangote and Tony Elumelu, among others, to invest in space Science and Technology sector of the country.

Dr Felix Alle, Head, Media and Corporate Communications of the agency, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja said Public Private Partnership, PPP, will boost space development.

Mr Alle said that the current leadership of the Space Agency under Dr Halilu Shaba was driven towards private sector participation that will ensure Nigerians benefit from space science and technology.

The official emphasised that globally, big entrepreneurs like Elon Musk and Richard Branson were investing in space economy because opportunities for growth abound.

He revealed that the desire to broaden PPP in the space sector spurred the agency to plan towards an internal conference and exhibition on Space Economy expected to hold early in 2023.

Alle said: “We believe that when we have this PPP, the impact of space technology will be adequately felt by the larger society.

“We are not relenting and NASRDA want Nigerians to be part of the space economy and the conference will showcase windows of opportunities available in the space sector.

“Those opportunities will be highlighted to members of the public and prospective investors so they can key into it because a lot of our people are still ignorant of opportunities in this area.

“We want the likes of Aliko Dangote, Elumelu and big businesses, entrepreneurs to show interest in the area of space sector.’’

Alle urged entrepreneurs to see the sector as a very strategic area that they can invest in and at the same time contribute to the socio-economic development of this country.

He added: “They can embark on so many projects, establish companies and boost their financial strength as well as create job opportunities for our youths.’’

Mr Alle said that the conference would be hosted in collaboration with the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and would gather key players across the globe.

He also said that the agency was expanding its partnerships, both locally and internationally, added to the existing ones.

According to him, ”we are doing all these to contribute to the socio-economic development of our country, because everything we do today has space connotation.”

Mr Alle further recalled a recent concession of some of the agency’s projects by the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, ICRC, to the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr Adeleke Mamora.

Mr Alle listed the projects to include the Satellite Broadband project, the Planetarium and the Space Museum which have the capacity of generating N48billion over 15 years period of their concession.

“The Director-General of ICRC, Joe Ohiani, told the Minister then that the projects can generate about N48billion and create like 10,000 jobs if implemented.

“It was a way of inviting PPP and the Memorandum to this effect is before the Federal Executive Council and as soon as this is approved, we will hit the ground running,’’ Mr Alle said.

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