The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC), says the oil rich Niger Delta area is no longer very attractive to investors because of the unrealistic demand and entitlement mindset.
Igo Weli, the General Manager, External Relations of SPDC, who disclosed this in Port Harcourt at the 2018 edition of the Nigerian Society of Engineers Port Harcourt Branch Week, also frowned on the expectation that private sector should take on the role of government even after fulfilling their statutory obligations to the state, and investing as much as their businesses can carry in social investments in the host communities.
He said: “This is not sustainable and perhaps accounts for the steady drop or reduction in investments, hence the dwindling opportunities in employment, contracts, and so on, in the Niger Delta in the past two decades.” He affirmed that the future of the Niger Delta is in the hands of private investors, and therefore, “stakeholders need to re-set their expectations and approach to achieve sustainable growth and development. Investors are to be wooed and investments, attracted, not taken for granted.”
He noted that the responsibility for the development of communities, societies or states resides primarily with government and community stakeholders themselves. He advocated the need for a conducive operating environment to enable the private sector do business profitably without fear so that they could implement social investment projects and programmes.