Nigeria seeks U.S. govt’s assistance in technology transfer
Minister of Science and Technology, Chief Ogbonnaya Onu, made the plea when he received a delegation from the US Embassy in Nigeria led by the Ambassador, James Entwistle.
He told the delegation: “In Nigeria, we want to be able to feed ourselves. We want to be able to manufacture within Nigeria many of the things we need, and this depends on science and technology. We would work very hard to help Nigeria get out of this problem of just having a mono- product economy.
“We are so happy Mr. Ambassador that you will be co-operating with us, and we want to assure you that the ministry would be very happy not only to cooperate but to collaborate with you. I assure you that the ministry will promote technology transfer initiative whereby we would like to work closely with companies that can help to transfer technology to Nigerians because we believe that is one way we can develop at a faster rate.
“We want to work closely with companies from the US that would be willing to help our people acquire the necessary technology to develop at the pace that we want.”
Onu, who stressed the commitment of Nigeria to world peace, said: “We are a nation that whenever there is crisis around us we go in to bring peace. We believe that we would continue to do this and will be in a position to do so with a strong economy. This is what the ministry of science and technology is determined to do for Nigeria.
“The United States is the largest economy in the world and you have been able to maintain that position because your economy is innovation-driven, is a knowledge- based economy. That is why even when there is turbulence in other economies, you are able to withstand the shock. This is the direction Nigeria wants to go. For too long, the country has had a mono-product economy-based economy, we depended essentially on agricultural products but when we got crude oil, there was a swing completely to dependence on crude oil and this has not been good for us because whenever there is turbulence, we feel it so much.”
Speaking, Entwistle recalled how United States and Nigeria have long partnered closely in various areas. “I have just had a very good chat about biotechnology and the potential for biotechnology as we look to expand production of agricultural products. We also have a relationship with your ministry on some nuclear safety issues. But it seems to me that there is a whole plan of issues that your ministry covers that are of great interest to the U.S. I am absolutely committed to working very closely with you. I am very glad to explore any possibilities that you may have in mind.”
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