Fred Itua, Abuja
President and chairman, Board of Directors of the African Export–Import Bank (Afreximbank), Dr Benedict Okey Oramah, was at his best recently. It was a dinner hosted in his honour at the The Dome, Abuja, by Dr Obiora Okonkwo .
From the moment Oramah arrived at 8 pm, there was no dull moment. First, were pleasantries with business personalities. One after the other, they embraced, laughed and shook hands with the Afrexim boss.
Okonkwo described Oramah as a patriotic Nigerian, “committed to the growth and development of the country. Beyond Nigeria, Afrexim under Oramah has made huge mark in investment and economic growth of Africa.
“We have a great patriot in our midst today. We are happy that he accepted, despite his tight schedule, to honour the dinner. He is a great son of Africa, he has done a lot to promote trade and investments on the continent.”
He encouraged the businessmen present to take advantage of the financial services of the bank to grow their investments and expand beyond the shores of Nigeria.
Oramah described Nigeria as a blessed country noting that the bank has made billions of dollars worth of investments into the economy. He urged Nigerian businesses to also explore opportunities that exist beyond the country shores. He disclosed that the African Union would soon launch a financial product of the bank to help financial integration and boost trade on the continent:
“I must congratulate Dikeora, Dr Okonkwo, for the transformation that has taken place here. Beyond the transformation, he has also created employment for some people. And it is that spirit that can drive our country. We need that spirit of investment, entrepreneurship and spirit that can create wealthy Nigerians.”
He encouraged Nigerians to invest more in production: “Trading without producing what you trade on is not always the best. China, India and other countries, who are good traders but produce what they trade on. Nigerians who have made a success out of trading should also consider investing in produce.”