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  •  Ten takeaways from State Visit to Portugal Two Nations and the will for strategic partnership Garba Shehu TEN TAKEAWAYS FROM STATE VISIT TO PORTUGAL TWO NATIONS AND THE WILL FOR STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP By Garba Shehu President Muhammadu Buhari s State Visit to Lisbon Portugal Wednesday 28th June to 2nd July was a first class success hellip
    Ten takeaways from State Visit to Portugal: Two Nations and the will for strategic partnership – Garba Shehu
     Ten takeaways from State Visit to Portugal Two Nations and the will for strategic partnership Garba Shehu TEN TAKEAWAYS FROM STATE VISIT TO PORTUGAL TWO NATIONS AND THE WILL FOR STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP By Garba Shehu President Muhammadu Buhari s State Visit to Lisbon Portugal Wednesday 28th June to 2nd July was a first class success hellip
    Ten takeaways from State Visit to Portugal: Two Nations and the will for strategic partnership – Garba Shehu
    General news44 mins ago

    Ten takeaways from State Visit to Portugal: Two Nations and the will for strategic partnership – Garba Shehu

    Ten takeaways from State Visit to Portugal: Two Nations and the will for strategic partnership – Garba Shehu

    TEN TAKEAWAYS FROM STATE VISIT TO PORTUGAL: TWO NATIONS AND THE WILL FOR STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP

    By Garba Shehu

    President Muhammadu Buhari’s State Visit to Lisbon, Portugal, Wednesday 28th June to 2nd July was a first class success story and this is measurable by outcomes, not least, the real determination of the two nations to engender a close relationship.

    Many in Nigeria remember that historically, Portuguese sailors were the first in Europe (ahead of British) to have contact with the territory now called Nigeria, when a certain Explorer, Rui de Sequira visited the Lagos area in 1472, actually naming the area around the city as Lago de Curamo, which means Lake of Curamo (Curamo, recall Kuramo Lagoon, Kuramo Beach and Kuramo Hall at the famous Eko Hotel, Lagos).

    Among the important things embedded in the vision of Nigeria’s role and place in the world , clearly laid by President Muhammadu Buhari, is the revival of important relationships that have suffered long neglect. In addition, he has a strong willingness to assume the leadership expected from Africa’s largest country in population and economy.

    So herein lies the first importance of this visit.

    One, there can be no better illustration of the larger strategic goal of the future of this relationship than the eight agreements and Memoranda Of Agreement, MOUs signed in the course of this visit.

    These are the MOU on political consultations, diplomatic training, research and exchange of information and documentation; cooperation in the field of culture; in the field of women and girls development, empowerment and gender affairs; youths and in the area of sports.

    At the very well attended Portugal and Nigeria Economic Forum with the chosen theme: “Expanding Investment and Trade Between Nigeria and Portugal,” two agreements also were signed, one between the Nigerian Investment Promotion Council and AICEP, its Portuguese equivalent and another between the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, NACCIMA and the similar body in Portugal.

    Two, this visit achieved a desire for a strategic partnership to strengthen the work Nigeria has been praised for doing by all levels of Portuguese authority- President, Prime Minister, President of National Assembly and Mayor of Lisbon-which is her stabilizing role in West Africa and importantly for the hosts, the stability and support of the ex-Portuguese territories in the subregion, specifically Guinea Bissau and São Tomé and Principe. This is resonating very well with the Portuguese.

    Three. Invariably linked to this is the convergence of strategic interests and the laying of a framework to strengthen security and cooperation between the two states.

    Portugal which has an association with with its former territories in Africa, the equivalent of our own British Commonwealth made up of Angola and Cape Verde in addition to the two others states mentioned. They have troops deployed for safekeeping duty in West Africa. They have committed to support Nigeria in military training, the sharing of intelligence and in the war against terrorism.

    Four. Nigeria and Portugal have equally identified a common interest and goal in the transatlantic gas pipeline for which our country needs investment and security. This is with a view to finding a market in Europe for the enormous gas resources available to us. After listening to a briefing on the pipeline by Mele Kyari, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, President Marcelo de Sousa was quick to show interest in the maritime mapping of the gas pipeline, instead of the Trans Saharan pathway which is equally an option. Portugal, says President Sousa has chosen for itself, the role of the spokesman and defender of African interests in the EU.

    Nigerian LNG is important for Portugal especially at this time of the Russia-Ukraine war, and the regime of western sanctions imposed on the Russian supply of oil and gas.

    With 60 percent of our LNG going to Portugal, meeting 30 percent of their energy needs, Portugal is today more energy secure than most of their Russia-dependent European neighbours. It is noteworthy that the Portuguese are very appreciative of the consistency and reliability of the gas from Nigeria, thanks of course to good management from NLNG.

    Five. The Kano-Maradi railway line being constructed by a Portuguese company, Mota-Engil, is turning out to be a significant factor in the emerging relations between our countries.

    Despite President Buhari’s emphasis at several speaking opportunities that the contractor met all requirements to beat others to get the job, the Portuguese authorities see it not only as a milestone in trade relations but also as a trailblazer and a precursor to the evolution of Nigeria as the gateway to the vast African market opened up by the African Continental Free Trade Area, AfCFTA.

    President Sousa spoke about their wish for the entry into the Nigerian market of Portuguese companies, “not in 30s or 100, but in their thousands.”

    Six, Portugal, which was a strong force in the UN recognition of Nigeria as one of five centres for vaccine production in Africa has determined to key into our health sector. They will come in. It’s a country with a very strong pharmaceutical economy.

    Seven, in the choice of Jose Peseiro, the Portuguese coach of the Super Eagles, Nigeria struck yet another positive cord that resonates politically and diplomatically.

    Even before the advent of coach Peseiro, there are more than 200 professional football players of Nigerian origin in Portugal.

    Some of them were brought to a meeting with the President, coordinated by Chairman, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa. Now, we have a commitment that the country famous for producing Ronaldo, and for its globally recognized football academy is opening up chances for our youth to train.

    Eight, there is also a welcome plan to share the achievements of Portugal in the field of renewable energy. With 60 percent of their energy got from renewable sources, that country ranks among the world leaders, hoping to reach carbon neutrality by 2030.

    For the Buhari administration, and hopefully for the succeeding ones, the attainment of set climate change objectives will continue as a priority. For our two countries, this will be a win-win.

    Nine, we have now an MOU on political consultations, diplomatic training, research and exchange of information and documentation. This will see our two nations working hand in hand at multilateral institutions including the UN. Portugal prides herself with experience in international relations.

    Ten. Lastly is the important thing about the very strong alignment of strategic interests of both countries. It’s rare to see this anywhere. The commitment to be with Nigeria is everywhere: All levels of authority in the country: President, Prime Minister, President of the National Assembly, and Mayor of Lisbon showing a total commitment to align with Nigeria. President Sousa in his second term said “I waited six years for this marriage.”

    They honored him with that country’s highest national order.

    For President Buhari, this visit is an affirmation of the norm that global aspirations must be accompanied by global engagements and a demonstration of his determination to turn commitments into actions.

    Hopefully, these will lead to the acceleration of the nation’s economic growth, securing the country, attracting investment and creating jobs.

    Garba Shehu is Senior Special Assistant to the President, Media and Publicity.

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Three Ship to Shore cranes and 10 Rubber Tyred Gantries critical to the commencement of operations of the Lekki Deep Seaport arrived in Nigeria on Friday the News Agency of Nigeria reports Their arrival according to Mr Mohammed Bello Koko Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority NPA represents a major step toward birthing Nigeria s first Deep Seaport It also hellip
    First vessel berths at Lekki deep seaport
     Three Ship to Shore cranes and 10 Rubber Tyred Gantries critical to the commencement of operations of the Lekki Deep Seaport arrived in Nigeria on Friday the News Agency of Nigeria reports Their arrival according to Mr Mohammed Bello Koko Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority NPA represents a major step toward birthing Nigeria s first Deep Seaport It also hellip
    First vessel berths at Lekki deep seaport
    General news2 days ago

    First vessel berths at Lekki deep seaport

    Three Ship-to-Shore cranes and 10 Rubber-Tyred Gantries critical to the commencement of operations of the Lekki Deep Seaport arrived in Nigeria on Friday, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.

    Their arrival, according to Mr Mohammed Bello-Koko, Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority(NPA), represents a major step toward birthing Nigeria’s first Deep Seaport.

    “It also demonstrates our readiness to take trade facilitation a notch higher,” Bello-Koko said in a speech at the event he described as “epoch making”.

    He said that the commitment of the NPA toward providing every support necessary to place Nigeria on the global list of countries with Deep Seaports was unflinching.

    “This is why matters related to the operationalisation of Lekki Deep Seaport before the end of this year have been placed on top priority,” he declared.

    The NPA helmsman thanked President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Ministry of Transportation for the tremendous backing the authority had enjoyed leading to the arrival of the vessel

    “For us at the NPA, the coming on stream of Lekki Deep Sea Port symbolises a lot of positives. Apart from being Nigeria’s first Deep Seaport, Lekki Port will also be the first fully automated port at take-off.

    “This provides an insight into the path we are already toeing as a management team to govern the operationalisation of not just the forthcoming Badagry, Ibom and Bonny Deep Seaports, but also of the reconstruction of the aged Tin-Can Port, where work will commence immediately the transport ministry and FEC approve.”

    He said that automation remained the most veritable tool for assuring port efficiency.

    “As most of us are aware, the NPA is working assiduously under the technical guidance of the International Maritime Organization to deploy the Port Community System which will enable us respond squarely to the dictates of global trade facilitation and optimise the opportunities of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement to which Nigeria is signatory.

    “Our strategic intent of becoming the maritime logistics hub for sustainable ports services in Africa rests heavily on how well we are able to deepen our efficiencies through a construction of deep seaports in order to leverage the concomitant benefits of economies of scale.”

    Bello-Koko congratulated all stakeholders on the milestone and prayed for greater strides as the nation pushes toward trade facilitation.

    NAN reports that the vessels came from Hong Kong.

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  The European Union EU has inaugurated the Team Europe Initiative TEI Nigeria Green Economy project aimed at stimulating sustainable climate smart agriculture and renewable energy for economic growth and diversification The EU ambassador to Nigeria and Economic Community of West African States ECOWAS Ms Samuela Isopi unveiled the project at the 8th EU Nigeria Business Forum tagged hellip
    EU inaugurates €1.3bn Nigeria green economy project
     The European Union EU has inaugurated the Team Europe Initiative TEI Nigeria Green Economy project aimed at stimulating sustainable climate smart agriculture and renewable energy for economic growth and diversification The EU ambassador to Nigeria and Economic Community of West African States ECOWAS Ms Samuela Isopi unveiled the project at the 8th EU Nigeria Business Forum tagged hellip
    EU inaugurates €1.3bn Nigeria green economy project
    Economy2 days ago

    EU inaugurates €1.3bn Nigeria green economy project

    The European Union (EU) has inaugurated the ‘Team Europe Initiative (TEI) Nigeria Green Economy’ project aimed at stimulating sustainable climate-smart agriculture and renewable energy for economic growth and diversification.

    The EU ambassador to Nigeria and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Ms Samuela Isopi, unveiled the project at the 8th EU-Nigeria Business Forum tagged: “Nigeria and the New Economy” on Friday, in Lagos.

    The News Agency of Nigeria reports that members of the TEI Green Economy Project are: Denmark, France, Germany and the Netherlands.

    According to the ambassador, the TEI Green Economy consists of 60 projects of different nature to be executed across the agricultural and energy sectors by 2027 and is valued at 1.3 billion Euros.

    Isopi said the project was aimed at improving the competitive advantage of Nigeria’s agriculture and energy sectors, with emphasis on access to clean and renewable energy as well as job creation, skills and capacity development.

    She added that the project was a result of collaborative efforts with the EU and member states, private and public sectors and the development financial institutions.

    She assured continued support for the Nigerian government in the implementation of its economic diversification policies and new partnerships with the private sector.

    “In line with the EU’s Green Deal, the Green Economy Initiative will support the Nigerian government’s efforts to diversify the economy by combining support to enhance access to renewable energy for productive uses and boosting the development of the agricultural sector.

    “Collectively, the actions will help Nigeria attain the SDGs and put the country on a sustainable development path.

    “The initiative will offer support in areas of expertise and strong European contribution such as climate-smart agriculture, technological and digital solutions, vocational training, employment and entrepreneurship creation as well as access to sustainable energy,” she said.

    She said the TEI would forge new partnerships with member states interested in supporting Nigeria’s circular economy efforts.

    Ms Inga Stefanowicz, EU Team Leader, Green and Digital Economy in Nigeria, said the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Development Financial Institutions would assist various players in the value-chains in the agricultural and energy sectors.

    “By combining EIB’s investment facilities with the European Development Finance Institutions and EU member states, the flagship initiative will create space for EU trade and investment while generating job opportunities for Nigeria’s youth.

    “In agriculture, support will be provided to promote and increase climate-smart agricultural production and value-added creation in selected value chains to address food insecurity, increase agricultural exports, tackle skills gaps and create jobs.

    “The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and state institutions will be supported in the delivery of its mandate, and in particular, development of agricultural education, integrating ICT and technical and vocational education and training,” she said.

    Stefanowicz added that field interventions would concentrate on creating positive spillover effects through the value chains including smallholder farmers, aggregators, processors, manufacturers, wholesalers, transporters and retailers.

    She said interventions in the energy sector would include capacity building, policy dialogue and advisory services with the ministry of power and its agencies, in developing an enabling policy environment, and adoption and implementation of measures.

    “They will concentrate on effective delivery of the Ministry’s mandate including the Paris Agreement Commitment, Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL) targets as well as the development of new energy access business models with the private sector.

    She added that the team would work with the Federal and State governments to address obstacles to ease of doing business and investment.

    Dr Mohammad Abubakar, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, lauded the initiative, adding that the agricultural sector had the largest potential to diversify the economy and provide the broad-based growth necessary for development as a “new growth engine.”

    Abubakar, who was represented by Dr Emmanuel Olaleye, Director, Agri-Business and Market Development, said the agricultural sector was essential to job creation, securing food supply, lowering inflation and expanding foreign exchange earnings.

    He said the Federal Government would continue to prioritise activities in the agriculture sector through targeted policies to attract investments, in line with the diversification drive and achieving food security.

    According to the minister, some of the policies include the National Agricultural Technology and Innovation policy, National Agricultural Resilience Framework (NARF, 2014), Agricultural Promotion Policy, (APP, 2016-2020), and National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP, 2019-2025), among others.

    He also emphasised the need for farmers and investors to tap into opportunities of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) for the country to become Africa’s largest producer of crops like Maize, Rice, and Soybeans.

    “The ministry has identified what needs to be done to achieve this by promoting the use of a better variety of seeds that are high yielding, disease-resistant, and adaptive quality.

    “We also seek to promote mechanised production through the Green Imperative that is government-enabled but private-sector driven that will reduce human effort and enhance productivity while removing drudgery in the farming operation and strengthen value chain linkages.

    “Others include increasing investments in commodity exchanges; aggregation and integration; supporting agricultural research and development; and reducing the risks associated with farming by de-risking agricultural productivity,” he said.

    He solicited the support of the EU and the EU countries to assist with capacity building for Nigeria and its companies to prepare proposals to access the Green Climate Fund (GCF).

    “EU companies and their Nigerian counterparts should take advantage of available GCF to attract Green Projects to Nigeria.

    “Execution of green projects will contribute to the reduction in Green House Gas (GHG) emissions as envisaged in the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) strategy,” he said.

    Markus Wauschkuhn, Germany’s Cluster Coordinator for Sustainable development projects in Nigeria, said Germany would continue to contribute to Nigeria’s competitive advantage through the Nigerian Competitiveness Project.

    According to him, the project focuses on improving Nigeria’s export potential in the area of ginger, tomatoes, chili, leather and garment and other resources to Europe.

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  The African Export Import Bank Afreximbank has announced that Algeria has joined the bank as its 52nd Member State This is contained in a statement by the bank s Media Contact Mr Amadou Sall in Abuja on Friday Afreximbank member states rose from 38 in 2015 to 51 in 2021 with Algeria s accession the bank is only three hellip
    Afreximbank admits Algeria as 52nd Member
     The African Export Import Bank Afreximbank has announced that Algeria has joined the bank as its 52nd Member State This is contained in a statement by the bank s Media Contact Mr Amadou Sall in Abuja on Friday Afreximbank member states rose from 38 in 2015 to 51 in 2021 with Algeria s accession the bank is only three hellip
    Afreximbank admits Algeria as 52nd Member
    Economy2 days ago

    Afreximbank admits Algeria as 52nd Member

    The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced that Algeria has joined the bank as its 52nd Member State.

    This is contained in a statement by the bank’s Media Contact, Mr Amadou Sall, in Abuja on Friday.

    Afreximbank member states rose from 38 in 2015 to 51 in 2021, with Algeria’s accession, the bank is only three states short of achieving full continental coverage.

    The bank added Algeria’s accession to the agreement establishing Afreximbank was formalised on June 8, by Presidential Decree No. 22-212.

    “The subscription of the country to the shares of Afreximbank as part of its membership in the institution was also authorised by Presidential Decree No. 22-222 on June 14, 2022.

    “Algeria becomes a Class A shareholder in the bank and will be represented by the Algerian Ministry of Finance.”

    Algeria has the ninth largest population and the fourth largest economy in Africa.

    It is also a member of the African Union, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and the Greater Arab Trade Area.

    The statement quoted Prof. Benedict Oramah, President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Afreximbank, saying “Algeria’s membership of Afreximbank is momentous.”

    “It brings Africa’s 4th largest economy within the Afreximbank family.

    “It creates a platform for Afreximbank’s AfCFTA intervention to be more impactful and paves the way for deeper cooperation between the bank, the Algerian Government, the Algerian Central Bank and Algerian importers and exporters.”

    Oramah said the bank looked forward to a successful partnership that would enable Algeria to firmly establish itself as a strong participant in intra-African trade and investments.

    NAN reports that Afreximbank is a Pan-African multilateral financial institution mandated to finance and promote intra-and extra-African trade.

    Afreximbank deploys innovative structures to deliver financing solutions that support the transformation of the structure of Africa’s trade, accelerating industrialisation and intra-regional trade, thereby, boosting economic expansion in Africa. .

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  The East African Crude Oil Pipeline EACOP represents a critical solution to making energy poverty history in Africa by 2030 In addition to transporting much needed oil across the region and improving energy security by connecting hydrocarbon rich basins in Uganda with their and international destinations the pipeline will be critical for job creation local community empowerment hellip
    East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) will Help Make Energy Poverty History in Africa by 2030
     The East African Crude Oil Pipeline EACOP represents a critical solution to making energy poverty history in Africa by 2030 In addition to transporting much needed oil across the region and improving energy security by connecting hydrocarbon rich basins in Uganda with their and international destinations the pipeline will be critical for job creation local community empowerment hellip
    East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) will Help Make Energy Poverty History in Africa by 2030
    Africa3 days ago

    East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) will Help Make Energy Poverty History in Africa by 2030

    The East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) represents a critical solution to making energy poverty history in Africa by 2030. In addition to transporting much-needed oil across the region and improving energy security by connecting hydrocarbon-rich basins in Uganda with their and international destinations, the pipeline will be critical for job creation, local community empowerment and broader socio-economic growth. However, despite its importance, Western environmental groups are calling for the project to be abandoned, citing environmental concerns. But at what point do Africa's energy needs and people's well-being take precedence over tabloid eco-socialism?

    The EACOP, also known as the Uganda-Tanzania Crude Pipeline, is a 1,443 km long crude oil pipeline that will connect Uganda's oil fields to the port of Tanga in Tanzania. The pipeline, with the capacity to transport approximately 216,000 barrels per day, is estimated to cost $3.5 billion and, once completed, will represent the longest heated crude oil pipeline in the world. Standard Bank of South Africa is currently advising the governments of Uganda and Tanzania, with ownership of the pipeline shared between TotalEnergies (62%); the China National Marine Petroleum Corporation (CNOOC) (8%); the Uganda National Pipeline Company (15%); and the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (15%).

    Following the discovery of commercially viable quantities of oil in Uganda's Lake Albert Basin and the completion of exploration by CNOOC, TotalEnergies and Tullow in 2006, the 1443 km EACOP was proposed. The pipeline, part of the larger Lake Albert Development Project, will transport Ugandan-produced oil to international markets, generating critical revenue for the entire East African community. Majority shareholder TotalEnergies proudly announced a $10 billion final investment decision for the project in February 2022, kickstarting development and ushering in a new era of energy security for the region.

    For Africa, the pipeline represents the solution to address energy poverty while driving socio-economic growth through the empowerment of local communities. During the construction phase alone, the pipeline is expected to create thousands of good-paying jobs and significant opportunities for local businesses, such as contractors. In addition, Tanzania and Uganda are expected to see a 60% increase in foreign direct investment, with more capital expected to flow through later stages of the project. Long-term employment, assured energy security, and the broader economic benefits derived from construction emphasize its importance in driving development in Africa. Put simply, if EACOP fails, Africa will remain energy poor.

    “Ugandans and Tanzanians should not have to pay the price of Western developed nations. It makes no sense to oppose the construction of the pipeline. If EACOP fails, there will be no guarantee of employment, as much of the population will remain energy poor for years to come, and investment directed at exploring East Africa will dry up. Africa does not deserve this. Africa deserves the rights to develop its resources and that includes EACOP,” says NJ Ayuk, CEO of the African Energy Chamber (AEC).

    Climate activists' call to #StopEACOP is detrimental, not only to East Africa's energy future, but also to the well-being of the regional community itself. In addition to fighting against the construction and operation of the project, the activists are targeting the financing of the project, as 20 major banks have been convinced not to finance the pipeline. Despite these attacks, project developers remain resilient and recognize the value of the pipeline.

    “TotalEnergies and its partners have been very proactive and invested heavily in building relationships at the community level. They have a strong track record of strong environmental stewardship and social commitment, and it gives the AEC peace of mind to back this project without hesitation. Citizens of Uganda and Tanzania are already benefiting from local content programs and community workshops, training programs and investments in local communities. This should not be stopped by fanatics who believe that Uganda, a country that has had one of the lowest greenhouse gas emissions, should be punished and pay the bill for the rich nations that now use coal to power their industries and homes. ”, he continued. Ayuk, adding that: “We are concerned that some want Ugandans and Africans to leave oil and gas in the ground while spending billions to power coal plants. Energy poverty is real. We are going to make EACOP a big part of the discussions during the African Energy Week (AEW). We will push for African suppliers to sign joint ventures with Ugandans and grow together, using this project to promote intra-African trade and collaboration as envisioned by the AfCFTA.”

    Let's face it, Ugandans have a plan to use income well and they should be given the right to debate how they do it within their societies, without interference or lectures from outsiders. EACOP proceeds will build schools, hospitals and modern infrastructure, as well as fund the development of other energy projects such as renewable energy, helping Ugandans bridge the gap between struggle and success. TotalEnergies has submitted a safe and carbon-friendly plan for this pipeline. The vast majority of Ugandans, Tanzanians and Africans are determined to support EACOP, TotalEnergies and their partners in this project. The project is poised to bring significant benefits to Ugandans and Tanzanians, bringing with it progressive socioeconomic growth, a decreased environmental footprint, and reduced risk associated with oil transportation.

    “Local communities and ordinary people always struggle to make ends meet in Uganda and Tanzania. I think TotalEnergies and EACOP are a godsend. The income and opportunities that are already reaching families and communities will make up for many of the gaps that exist. Let's stop disrupting Africa's development and use EACOP and any other oil and gas projects on the continent to lead Africa into a new era of economic and energy success,” Ayuk concluded.