The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) have entered into a partnership on reviving their bilateral relationship to fast-track industrialization and eradicate poverty bedevilling Nigerian citizens.
The country representative and head, Investment and Technology Promotion Office (ITPO) of UNIDO in Nigeria, Mrs. Abimbola Olufore, made this known when she paid a courtesy visit on the NOTAP director-general, Dr. DanAzumi Ibrahim, in his office in Abuja.
She said UNIDO started investment promotion services in 1986 to offer opportunities for investors and technology suppliers as well as foster potential partnership and give unique services to entrepreneurs and business institutions which, according to her, had metamorphosed into a global network of investment and technology promotion offices (ITPOs).
Abimbola explained that UNIDO currently has nine ITPOs across the world in eight countries, namely China, Italy, Germany, Kingdom of Bahrain, Russia, Japan, Republic of Korea and Nigeria, adding the Nigerian ITPO which was launched in March 2016 was the first in Africa and currently extends its services to the ECOWAS sub-region with the aim of strengthening trade and economic collaboration.
She said the ITPO Nigeria was primarily established as a platform through which small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and other private establishments could access investment and modern technologies that could fast-track sustainable growth in the country.
The country representative said UNIDO had always worked in synergy with NOTAP and would like to further strengthen the collaboration in the area of promoting programs aimed at industrializing the country as well as alleviating poverty. She added this would be achieved through organizing all year-round technology promotion programmes on the latest investment climate and business opportunities in Nigeria.
Earlier, Ibrahim, represented by NOTAP’s director, consultancy services department, Dr. Adamu Tandama, thanked the visitors and recalled that NOTAP had collaborated with UNIDO in promoting economic sustainability through scientific and innovative approach, saying the agency was ready and committed to strengthening the bilateral relationship to achieve sustainable economic development in the country.
The DG explained that NOTAP was established to regulate the inflow of foreign technology into the country and at the same time, promote the development of indigenous technology for economic growth of the country and commended UNIDO for establishing investment and technology Promotion Offices in Nigeria, where young entrepreneurs could gain professional training and also leverage on the UNIDO platform to establish international business connections for their economic sustainability.
Ibrahim said the agency had initiated various programmes to properly connect the academia with the industry for adequate utilization of research and development (R&D) results emanating from the knowledge institutions, adding such programmes as the establishment of intellectual property and technology transfer offices (IPTTOs) as well as NOTAP Industry Technology Transfer Fellowship (NITTF) were flagship programmes that had permeated into the Nigerian educational system.
A statement by Raymond Ogbu for the head public relations and protocol unit, said the NOTAP boss added that Nigerian researchers had done great in terms of turning out credible and peer-reviewed research publications but contended that commercialization of R&D still remains a challenge owing to lack of entrepreneurial skills. He said entrepreneurial development was needed to ensure that the country’s research results end up in the market as goods and services, expressing strong conviction that with UNIDO’s collaboration, the challenge of commercialization would be a thing of the past.
Ibrahim assured that the agency would synergize with UNIDO in growing technology entrepreneurial development to ensure that R&D results hanging on the shelves in some knowledge institutions are harnessed for socio-economic development of the country.