On May 26, 2017, the government of Oyo State formally unveiled the concept design of its proposed industrial park as part of activities to mark the sixth year into the administration. It was christened: TRANSFORMATION INDUSTRIAL PARK.
It was part of a series of inspiring promises made to a team of Chinese investors who visited the state recently. If and when it eventually takes place, the government would have succeded in fulfilling its three fold policy which include; Repositioning, Restoration and Transformation.
The park according to the Governor will boast of 162 plots of land on the Ibadan-Lagos expressway with the Free Trade Zones located on 4,000 hectares of land. The governor said his administration has attracted 34 new companies in the last six years of his administration and those companies have yielded a turnover of N32 billion and have created over 3,000 jobs. The governor also said that the Industrial Park had been divided into 162 plots of various sizes to accommodate medium and small scale industries.
Unfortunately, like most projects of its nature, policy statements and intentions are never enough to drive the wheel of socio-economic progress. Oftentimes to enrich final implementation, it may be expedient to explore the policy literature with a view to ascertaining whether or not government has a clear understanding of what it wants to do and how to go about the task of doing it in other to generate maximum impacts. It is in this regards that a toothcomb appraisal of the state government industrial park policy vide objectives, implementation framework and historical experience has become evidently necessary.
According to Governor Ajimobi, the state is ready to copy the development model of China which has placed the country (China) among the three leading economies of the world. Eco-Industrial Park is not just about bringing companies together but those companies must be related to each other. Like the waste product of one company will serve as raw materials for another one. That is the purpose, not just bringing companies for economic gains without consideration for environmental sustainability.
We can only hope this project will see make meaningful impact.
With inputs from Development Practitioners at CESDEV