About Cross River State, Nigeria

As the newest member of the Sister States of Maryland, Cross River State of Nigeria is pleased to join the Great State of Maryland in seeking mutually beneficial opportunities for Business Development, Agriculture, Health, Education, Industry, Environment, Transportation, Culture, and Tourism. Cross River State is one of Nigeria’s 36 states. Created in 1987, Cross River State is located in the southeastern corner of Nigeria and shares a common boundary with the Republic of Cameroon to the East, Benue State to the North, Ebonyi State to the North West, Abia and Anambra States to the West, and Akwa Ibom State to the South. The State derives its name from the Cross River, which traverses almost the entire length of the State and empties into the Atlantic Ocean. The State has an area of 23,072,425 square kilometers with a population of about 3.2 million people (2005 est.).

The State is situated within the rich tropical region of Nigeria. However, the Obudu/Obanliku plateau, at an altitude of 1,575.76 meters above sea level, has a climate typical of the temperate regions of the world. The capital city of Cross River State is Calabar, a coastal city with a rich cultural and historical heritage.

The governor of Cross River State is Senator Liyel Imoke who is serving his second term as governor. The state is divided into 18 administrative units (Local Government Areas) set in 3 Senatorial Districts.

The business language of the state is English. However, Efik, the language of trade and commerce in the 19th and early 20th centuries in southeastern Nigeria, is very widely spoken in Cross River State. Several other languages are spoken by the people of Ekoi, Etung, Ejagham, Boki, Yala, and Becheve tribes.

Governor Liyel Imoke is very committed to the education of the people of Cross River State. There are more than 230 pre-primary schools, over 648 primary schools, and about 145 post-primary schools. Among the institutions of higher learning are, the State College of Education, Cross River University of Technology better known as CRUTECH, and the University of Calabar (UNICAL), a Federal University. Under Governor Imoke’s workforce development initiative, strategic establishment of Polytechnic institutions in each of the three Senatorial Districts is firmly in progress.

Business Opportunities
Cross River State is a business friendly and innovative state that welcomes potential business partners and investors. The state’s goal is to build a healthy private sector economy with emphasis on jobs creation and manufacturing. To that extent, the state has established a One Stop Investment Center (OSIC) to:

  • Provide general information and data on the state economy to facilitate informed investment decisions
  • Prompt granting of business entry approvals, permits and authorization to investors
  • Facilitate post-entry approvals, licenses and sector-specific permits with statutory government agencies
  • Provide, on behalf of investors, general facilitation of investment projects with all government agencies.
  • Provide general advisory services on unlimited and profitable investment opportunities including matching investors’ requirements with opportunities available in the state.

Agriculture is the leading revenue contributor to the State's economy and employs at about 70 percent of the State's labor force. Investment in infrastructure and modern inputs such as fertilizer, seeds, tools and agro-chemicals, would greatly improve the quality and quantity of agricultural output in the state. Oil Palms, Rubber, and Cocoa, are Cross River State's major cash crops. As the second highest producer of Cocoa in Nigeria, Cross River State’s high potential for improving productivity in cocoa farming offers an attractive investment prospect. The state is also a source of high quality oil palm, rubber, and cashews in commercial quantities. Other crops are cassava, yams, rice, plantain, banana, cocoyam, maize/corn, groundnut/peanuts, mangos, oranges, sugar canes, and pine apples.

Solid Minerals
Mineral resources in Cross River State include limestone, gypsum, titanium, tin ore, ceramic raw materials, and hardstone.

Cross River State is developing tourism-related infrastructure and activities to attract National and international visitors to the state. The State is very rich in culture and offers spectacular tourism sites such as Obudu Mountain Resort with breathtaking views of the hill tops rising 5200 feet above sea level, a 4-km cable car ride over the mountains, a canopy walkway through tropical forests, and a water parks; Agbokim Waterfalls; The Old Residency Museum (offers a moving display of the history of slave trade from Cross River); the Cross River National Park, home to a variety of rare and endangered animal species, including the Cross River Gorilla; and several other sites spread around the state.

For more information visit Cross River State Government online.