ECOWAS urges member states to champion investment promotion

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By Mark Longyen

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has called on member states to champion the cause of promoting investment in order to engender sustainable development in the subregion.

ECOWAS Ag. Director, Private Sector Investment, Anthony Elumelu, gave the charge during a meeting of the technical committee of the Association of Investment Promotion Agencies of West African States (IPAWAS) on Thursday in Abuja.

Elumelu said that the event aimed at availing all member states the opportunity to shape IPAWAS’ form and structure as the regional platform for cooperation in investment promotion and facilitation.

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He noted that continuous support and collaboration with the ECOWAS Commission by member states would enable investors to accept the subregion as the most favored destination for investment drive.

“As we gather here in Abuja, we embark on a momentous journey that will shape the future of investment promotion and economic development in our region.

“IPAWAS represents a significant milestone, bringing together IPAs from across West Africa to foster collaboration, share best practices and drive investment growth.

“We believe that by fostering cooperation in pursuit of that mandate, there would be synergies to achieve experience sharing, peer reviews, and collaboration through scale economies,” he said.

Elumelu urged the participants to deliberate on the draft statute that would govern IPAWAS, shape the framework for cooperation, define their roles, and set the stage for impactful collaboration.

According to him, at the end of the event, all member states will own the statute as the framework for IPAs cooperation and collaboration for promoting cross-border investment within the ECOWAS space.

“Within this framework, we can also speak with one voice in our participation and membership of the Pan-African Investment Agency created by Article 42 of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCTA) Investment Pool.

“The ECOWAS Common Investment Market (ECIM) and AfCTA provide us with unprecedented opportunities.

“By aligning our efforts, streamlining regulations, and promoting cross-border investments, we can unlock the full potential of our region,” he said.

Elumelu stressed that it was only through such collaborative efforts that a stronger and more resilient West Africa, which attracts investors, creates jobs, and drives sustainable development, could be built.

“I therefore, encourage each IPA representative to actively participate, contribute your expertise and champion the cause of investment promotion,” Elumelu added.(NAN)

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