The Enyimba Economic City (EEC), a brain child of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu-led administration, has won the first Charter Cities Business Plan Contest for 2019 with a cash prize of $25,000.
It defeated several other participating cities from around the world including Blackstone Charter Cities of Australia and Novgorod New Hanse Town of Russia to the second and third positions, respectively.
In a statement released by the Charter Cities Institute, organizers of the contest, the Institute said it is “pleased to announce the winners of our Charter Cities Business Plan Contest. After application reviews and interviews, 1st prize and $25,000 is awarded to Enyimba Economic City (Nigeria), 2nd prize, $10,000, to Blackstone Charter Cities (Australia), and 3rd prize to Novgorod New Hanse Town (Russia).
“We launched the Charter Cities Business Plan Contest to identify teams around the world with forward-looking, viable plans for a Charter City.The winners each exceeded our expectations regarding the location, target industries, and growth potential of their respective Charter Cities.
The Charter Cities Institute looks forward to working with all three teams as they execute their plans”.
The Enyimba Economic City is a 9,464-hectare Greenfield Charter City. It will connect the 9 states of South-East and South-South Nigeria, with a population of about 60 million, turning the area into a global business hub. The city will leverage existing/improved infrastructure, including high-grade roads, rail, airports, inland ports, natural gas pipelines, a 540 MW powerplant, water treatment and waste management. Enyimba Economic City will feature a state-of-the-art administrative structure to attract residents and businesses.
“Enyimba’s core industry will be manufacturing, with ancillary drivers including logistics, medical, entertainment, education, commerce, lifestyle residency, and aviation. The City is a free-trade zone, with independent business registry, labor law, baking regulations and more. Enyimba Economic City is privately-led, but stakeholders include the local community, the state government (Abia State), and the Federal Government. Advisors and financiers include the African Export-Import Bank, African Development Bank, and the International Finance Corporation”.
The Enyimba Economic City with an annual output of over $5Bn will provide over 700,000 direct jobs, massively transform the economy of the southeastern region of Nigeria and even beyond. Several multilateral institutions have also dubbed the City one of the most transformational projects in Africa today.