IN an effort to improve the quality of shoes produced in Aba, Abia State to international standard, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has secured the interest of a Chinese company which has agreed to set up $1.5 billion shoe industry in Aba.
The company, Huajian Shoe Industry based in Dongguan, Guangzhou, China and Governor Ikpeazu, according to Enyinnaya Appolos, the Governor’s spokesman, met and secured the agreement during a meeting with Mr. Zhang Huarong, the Group Chairman of the company, during the recent 1st Nigeria-China Governors Investment Forum.
The Abia-Huajian Shoe Industrial City is expected to produce 5,000 shoes per day and engage about 10,000 people directly and indirectly. The tenets of the agreement provide that Abia State Government would provide the land and other conducive investment incentives for the project while the Huajian Group would fund the entire project.
Mr. Huarong, was quoted as saying that Governor Ikpeazu was the first Nigerian leader to visit him and disclosed that the Huajian Group has already employed 6,000 staff and currently developing a 250-acre Industrial City in Ethiopia and expressed his readiness to invest in Nigeria.
The Huajian Group, according to him, currently employs about 20,000 staff in China and operates a 10,000-shoe per day factory in Dongguan, China said to value at $2 billion. Mr. Huarong was also said to have assured that he would visit the Abia before the end of April 2017 for further discussion on the project.