The Ogun State Government has tasked youths across the country to put their digital skills to use in harnessing the opportunities in non-oil exportation.
The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Olu. Ola. Aikulola, made this known in Ijebu-Ode, at a day workshop on youth empowerment organised by the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC), in collaboration with the State government.
Represented by the Director of Commerce, Mr. Olalere Ariyibi-Opaleye, the Permanent Secretary underscored the importance of youth empowerment, describing it as an avenue that would give them the push to take control of their future.
Aikulola stated that the innate power within the younger generation is capable of making the world a much better place, saying the youth at the moment have the best opportunity to key into the ongoing diversification process from oil to non-oil products in Nigeria.
He added that the present administration in the State was playing vital roles in assisting trade and export activities through aggressive agricultural production, and industrialisation programmes.
The Permanent Secretary stated that youth empowerment should be sustained in order to equip the leaders of tomorrow with the requisite skills to key into export business, thereby strengthening the State, and improving Gross Domestic Products (GDP) which have a direct impact on the standard of living.
“We are all talking about diversification of our economy from oil to the exportation of agricultural products and other non-oil products. It is expedient of our youths to take full advantage of this opportunity, as well as equip themselves to be part of the team that will take Ogun and Nigeria to her desired position in digital exposition and export business, ” Aikulola said.
In her welcome address, the State Coordinator, NEPC, Mrs. Francisca Odega, said the youth population was a great asset to any economy, noting that the Council launched Youth Export Programme (YEP) a few weeks ago, to create a platform for mainstreaming youth into the non-oil export value chain.
Odega pointed out that many Nigerian youths embraced non-oil export business which had changed various export ventures in diverse sectors, including sports, education, entertainment, fashion, and agriculture, among others.
Delivering his lecture, Mr. Emmanuel Erika, said the advent of digital technology had reduced the challenge of export, adding that, ‘’export is tomorrow’s business which begins today’’.