Kwara State and FCMB Collaborate to Boost Business Environment

Date: 2024-06-11

According to a news report from The Nation, the Kwara State government is partnering with First City Monument Bank (FCMB) to improve the ease of doing business across the state under the World Bank-funded State Action on Business Enabling Reforms (SABER) programme.

The SABER programme aims to foster public-private partnerships, drive investments, enhance land and tax administration, and develop infrastructure.

To ensure successful implementation, Kwara State and FCMB jointly organised a workshop in Ilorin focusing on the Framework for Responsible and Inclusive Land-Intensive Agricultural Investments (FRILIA).

The workshop, attended by government officials, farmers, community leaders, and agribusiness stakeholders, addressed the social and environmental aspects of land allocation, promoting climate-smart farming practices and protecting the ecosystem in line with global best practices.

The state Commissioner for Finance, Mrs. Hauwa Nuru, described the adoption of SABER and FRILIA as a significant milestone for the state, highlighting the commitment of Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq’s administration to sustainable development.

Mrs. Nuru stated: “Our goal is to improve agricultural practices by elevating land-intensive agricultural investments in Kwara State to international standards, ensuring long-term benefits for future generations. We will explore the framework, including strategies for valuation, resettlement, compensation, community needs, food security, successful models, regulatory frameworks, and support mechanisms. Leveraging our extensive land resources, we are committed to driving sustainable economic development.”

Managing Director/CEO, FCMB, Mrs. Yemisi Edun, reaffirmed the bank’s commitment to fostering inclusive and sustainable growth in communities across Nigeria by building a supportive ecosystem that connects people, capital and markets.

She said: “The SABER fund and FRILIA will promote harmony, attract investment to Kwara State, create jobs and wealth, reduce rural-urban migration, and ensure prosperity for individuals, communities and the nation. We commend the State Government for progressing in advancing reforms and for meeting the stringent criteria set by the World Bank and the Federal Government to benefit from the fund.”

Dr. Paul Adepelumi, a World Bank Technical Advisor, said the FRILIA framework, a key component of SABER, ensures that land acquisition and resettlement for large-scale agribusiness investments align with international best practices. It guarantees shared benefits between private investors and communities, creating an enabling business environment and improving the agricultural value chain through proactive management of environmental and social impacts.

 


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