Imo State Governor Hope Uzodimma has said the multinational oil exploration giant, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), plans to return to the state to resume operations after years of leaving the state due to insecurity.

Uzodimma made this known in a statement issued Friday by his Chief Press Secretary and Media Adviser to Governor Oguwike Nwachukwu after a meeting between him and SPDC Chairman and General Manager, Mr Osagie Okunbor in Abuja.

He said Shell’s planned return to Imo is one of several efforts his government has made recently to bring back companies that have left the state due to uncertainty or debt-based liquidation.

The governor also stated that his administration successfully reduced the Standard Shoe Company Limited which until now operated in Owerri and which has been acquired by AMCON for indebtedness.

He said his government has successfully settled N1.6 billion in debt to receive the Proof of Occupancy from AMCON management to resume operations.

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According to the Governor, Shell specifically left Imo State because of the insecurity even before his government came on board.

He said: “One of my government’s comments in resuming office was the fact that Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) had been off-site and suspended operations in Imo state due to insecurity, vandalism and illegal oil bunkering in the region”.

He said that after restoring peace and tranquility along the coastline, he met again today with the oil giant’s chief executive and chairman, Osagie Okunbor, adding that he was delighted with his assurances and confirmation of the company’s intentions. to resume exploration in the state.

Uzodimma said the development is expected to create a ripple effect and economic boost for the growth of local content in the region and the state in general, while contributing to more government development projects.

He expressed his deepest gratitude to SPDC’s management and staff and assured that the state government is committed to any partnership that would bring about the development of the state.

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