The Akwa Ibom State Governor and Interim Chairman, South-East/South-South Governors’ Forum, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, has said that refineries and petrochemical industries should be located in areas where oil is being explored.
Emmanuel said this after a recent inaugural meeting of governors in the two zones.
A statement on Monday quoted the governor to have said, “It doesn’t make economic sense to lay sub-sea pipelines from the locations where oil is explored to other parts of the nation at a cost of $5bn (about N2tn).
“This amount is enough to build many modular refineries and establish seven industrial parks in the Niger Delta region.”
Emmanuel stated that the two zones had come together to harmonise their economic interests and pursue inter-regional cooperation and integration.
“If mature democracies as exemplified by the European Union could see the economic benefits of coming together, expanding markets and opportunities, I think the decision of the two zones to come together is, frankly speaking, long overdue and highly commendable,” he said.
The governor added that the bloc would keep on demanding and insisting that resources in the zones be utilised to develop them, saying,” I believe this is a fair demand. There is no reason why we should be blessed with huge resources and yet our region lacks the corresponding federal presence or infrastructure.