Heads of FrieslandCampina, Heineken commit to increased investments in Nigeria

The leadership of Dutch firms in Nigeria have pledged to increase their investments in the country.

The commitments were made when Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, met with some of the CEOs of the Dutch firms during his official visit to The Hague, Netherlands.

According to a statement released by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, Mr Hein Schumacher of FrieslandCampina described Nigeria as “a most important country to us,” adding that the conglomerate would invest about €11 million euros in a “ready-to-drink project, using 100% locally sourced milk.”

He also pledged continuous training for dairy farmers, and provision of fortified milk for school pupils.

In the same vein, his counterpart at Heineken NV, Mr Roland Pirmez, Regional President, Heineken Africa, Middle East and Eastern Europe commended the government for “stability in exchange rate for the past six to eight months.”

He added that the company was also planning to use renewable energy for its power needs.

President Muhammadu Buhari meets with heads of Dutch firms on his visit to the Netherlands

President Muhammadu Buhari takes a group photo with heads of Dutch firms on his visit to the Netherlands

Mr Klaus Struilesma of a company called Connexion expressed interest in building cattle ranches in Nigeria.

Over 20 CEOs of Dutch-owned companies were at the roundtable meeting. President Buhari had earlier assured them of a safe and secure Nigeria, where their investments would be safe, and yield handsome returns.

“….stability was the first thing in our campaigns. You have to secure a country first before you can effectively manage it. Before businesses can thrive, security is paramount. That is why we lay so much emphasis on securing the country.

“After security, our next emphasis is reviving the economy, and then, fighting corruption,” the President said.

He commended the many Dutch-owned companies operating in Nigeria for dealing fairly, noting that with many of them, “the relationship dates back more than two generations, and it is now almost a blood relationship rather than commercial.”

Buhari urged the businesses to build factories in Nigeria and use local raw materials instead of wholesale imports. However, he said he was impressed with the economic cooperation between Nigeria and Netherlands.

Other notable Dutch firms that featured prominently in the conversation included Royal Dutch Shell, and Vlisco which expressed readiness to invest on 400 hectares of land for the establishment of a textile park in the country.

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