The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has said his administration will partner with Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing (IVM) to take the lead in converting vehicles using Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) to run on Compressed Natural Gas (CNG).
The governor said this during a courtesy visit by the Chairman of IVM, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, to Government House, Benin City.
Obaseki noted, “There is a big push to buy vehicles but a bigger push to convert vehicles using PMS to run on gas. Edo is the gas hub of the nation. We are ready to partner with Innoson to train young men and women to do the conversion. This can provide jobs for 1,000 youths. We can train youths on how to do this as we can’t continue with subsidy.
The governor commended Chief Innocent Chukwuma for pioneering car manufacturing in Nigeria and overcoming the challenges in the automobile industry, adding, “For us in Edo State, it is honourable for you to want to partner with us. Edo is a transportation hub and the second largest automobile market in the country. We have a large automobile market in the state.
“Edo is a transport hub with market opportunities and Innoson Motors has chosen Edo State and decided to use the opportunity to train young men and women who will maintain these vehicles. One of the biggest problems with automobile care in this country is maintenance. It is difficult to find qualified people and the right parts of vehicles, but he is offering all these services.”
According to Obaseki, “We are developing an Industrial Park with capacity of accommodating you and as the partnership progresses, together we will create an automobile market and make it the biggest in Africa. I appreciate your offer to help us train people relating to fixing vehicles.”
On his part, the Chairman of IVM, Chief Chukwuma, said “We are ready to partner with the Edo State Government in converting PMS cars to CNG using the availability of electricity. We are ready to support the conversion of PMS vehicles to CNG in full as it is the only way the economy of Nigeria will survive.
“We are ready to train people to convert these cars. That is why we are here in Edo State. We will train youths on panel beating, auto-mechanic, painting and electricals, among others.
He said, “Nigerians are buying my vehicles. The vehicles and parts are cheaper because they are made in Nigeria. Governor Godwin Obaseki is working and developing the state to create a conducive environment for businesses to thrive in the state. Innoson Motors wants to also benefit from Edo State.”