From: Emma Emeozor
Denmark has said it is ready to assist Nigeria achieve its socio-economic development goals.
The country’s ambassador to Nigeria, Torben A. Gettermann, made the pledge while explaining that agriculture and containment of oil spills are among key sectors Danish companies are involved in Nigeria.
He spoke with Daily Sun on the sideline of a reception for Nigerian companies partnering with a Danish company in the management of oil spill in the Niger Delta region. The event which held at the Consulate General of Denmark in Lagos aims to strengthen bilateral ties between Nigeria and Denmark while promoting people-to-people relations.
The partnership involves a renowned Denmark company, DESMI Ro-Clean and two Nigerian companies, Samdus Oil and Gas and Axflo Oil and Gas. The envoy explained that the companies are operating on purely commercial bases.
DESMI Ro-Clean, a company that has existed for 183 years and operates in over 100 countries, will give technical support to the two indigenous companies in dealing with the problem of environmental degradation caused by oil spills.
Gettermann said: “We are not thinking about old oil spills like the Ogoni case. We are looking at new cases, pipeline leakages, how to shut up the leak, contain the oil spill in a manner that it doesn’t contaminate the sea, land and coast.
“For us, the partnership is very important because when the companies know how to deal with the environment, there will be added value for all. It is important that when there is environmental disaster resulting from oil spills, there should be on ground the right equipment and workers to deal with the situation in a way that is safe, secure and efficient. So, we are here discussing what partnership between DESMI Ro-Clean and the Nigerian companies can achieve in terms of services that they (Nigerian companies) don’t already have.”
On agricultural development, Gettermann said Denmark is aware of the effort of Nigeria to diversify its economy and move from dependency on oil and gas “and development of agriculture is top on the government’s agenda. We are ready to assist in the improvement of the sector.”
Already, Danish companies have started investing in diary production and would expand to rearing cattle. He disclosed that Nigeria and Denmark have signed a “Letter of Intent” “and one of the issues is how to raise cattle that is really more valuable than the ones seen in the streets.
“Here in Nigeria, cattle move from one place to another such that whatever energy they have is quickly lost. But if they are stationary, the energy is conserved and a better quality of meat produced. So, we are trying to put more substance into the agreement and raising cattle, dairy cow is one of the very important aspects of it.”
He believes that the involvement of Danish companies could help stop the herdsmen crisis across the country as cattle would no longer roam the streets and highways in search of grazing land.
The envoy said Denmark wants to see Nigeria climb the development and growth ladder very fast. “We and I mean the Danish government, the Danish Embassy and the Danish Consulate General are ready to do whatever we can to help Nigeria improve its economy.”
He commended the Federal Government for the “campaign to ease doing business in the country” just as he said there is still more to be done in the areas of good governance, transparency and the fight against corruption.