‘How Rivers promotes tourism in Nigeria’
Rivers State Government has reiterated its commitment to grow the tourism industry in the state, describing the state as a destination for hospitality and cultural heritage.
Commissioner for Information and Communications, Paulinus Nsirim, in an interview, said Rivers State is blessed with human and material resources, besides also being the headquarters of the hydrocarbon industry in Nigeria.
Speaking on an initiative titled, ‘Our State, Our Responsibility,’ Nsirim said the campaign is designed to correct wrong perception of citizens and to inform the general public that Rivers State is set for business and to make everyone living and doing business in the state to understand there is a shared prosperity to protect.
He said: “The truth is that Rivers State is blessed with human and material resources. We have two sea ports and an international airport. We have a welcoming culture and a rich cultural heritage. We have cuisine that is second to none in this country. But we have found out over the years that a lot of people are de-marketing the state, making investors flee.
“This means that if Rivers State economy is booming, everyone that lives and does business here will be a partaker of that boom. The campaign is aimed at injecting into the psyche of everyone, even those children yet unborn and those who will visit the state in a couple of years to understand that as long as you live in Rivers State, it belongs to you.
“Every resident must participate in ensuring that the state is positively projected at a level where it becomes the investors’ destination of choice; just like the Nyesom Wike’s administration is building the right infrastructure now.”
Nsirim continued, “Since that campaign, we found out that a lot of investments are coming in. For example, you have the biggest supermarket in West Africa and other markets in Port Harcourt. You have a stock gap company here in Port Harcourt that deals with producing domestic gas.
“Prior to now, LNG would ship gas to Lagos and truck back to Port Harcourt. But right now in Port Harcourt, you have a company that produces domestic gas for the domestic market. Also, before the outbreak of COVID-19, Ethiopian and Turkish Airlines had begun flight operations to Port Harcourt.
“Businesses are booming in many parts of the Port Harcourt Industrial Area. Those in Real Estate are also experiencing a boom because a lot of people are coming in to do business here, and of course, the narrative is changing gradually.
“The state is blessed with a visionary leader who has put in place a strategic security architecture, which has checkmated all forms of insecurity that was holding sway here in the past.”
“Now, things are stable and the narrative has changed for the better. One can always find out with the National Bureau of Statistics the status of these things they say about the state with the highest Internally Generated Revenue (IGR). After Lagos, the next is Rivers State. You cannot generate the volume of IGR that we have if our state is insecure and the business climate is not thriving,” he added.
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