By Florence Onuegbu
Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, says Lagos will need about $15 billion for infrastructure over the next five years.
Sanwo-Olu said this on Thursday at the third Lagos Investors’ Roundtable and Unveiling of Deal Book, organised by the Office of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Investment at Victoria Island.
He said that the state needed such amount, given its rising population and limited geographical space.
”We believe that given the rising population and limited geography space that we have, Lagos will indeed require about $15 billion over the next five years on infrastructure alone.
”Fifteen million dollars is about five times the budget that we currently have. Lagos budget is about $3 billion today,” Sanwo-Olu said.
The governor called on investors to optimise the advantages of the opportunities in Lagos State toward the goal of developing a 21st Century economy as projected by his administration.
He also called for partnership with investors and private sector, as the implementation of the development strategies of his administration demanded partnership and contributions of private investors.
”We strongly believe that the continued growth and success of Lagos is premised on the strength and diversity of our partnerships.
”It is such strategic partnerships that account for Lagos being by far the leading recipient of local and foreign direct investments in Nigeria.
”It is estimated that in the last few years, about 80 per cent of the investments into Nigeria, has come into Lagos.
”These investments remain vital to our economic growth and wellbeing, supporting tens of thousands of jobs and livelihoods across the city.
”This is the reason why a forum like this is so important – as a platform for harmonising our respective visions and targets and agreeing on key actions that will not only strengthen existing investment partnerships but also initiate new ones,” Sanwo-Olu said.
The governor said that his government understood the value of the relationships in fostering economic resilience, particularly during times of uncertainty, marked by the combined effects of a global pandemic, climate change, global inflation, the burden of poverty and social and economic inequality, among others.
He said that the government had a huge responsibility to develop critical hard and soft infrastructure that could act as a catalyst for investors.
The governor also unveiled the ”Lagos Deal Book”, which is a compendium of investment opportunities across the state, as well as information about the incentives for making the investments and the processes for investment.
”I encourage you all to take advantage of the rich information contained in this Deal Book to guide and inform your decision making.
”Information, they say, is power, and there is something of value and interest to each and every one of you inside the compendium.
”I also urge you all to continue to support, partner and collaborate with Lagos State and with one another to create sustainable economic prosperity that will touch the lives of all Lagosians.
”I would like to ask you all, to please spread the word; Lagos State is open and ready for investment, innovation and collaboration,” he said.
Speaking earlier, Special Adviser to Governor Sanwo-Olu on Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and Investment, Mrs Solape Hammond, said that the roundtable was part of shared aspiration towards making Lagos the most preferred investment destination in the world.
Hammond reassured the investors of the determination to institute business-friendly measures to boost investors’ confidence and guarantee trust.
She said that her office was working with relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government to minimise all perceived threats and scale-up strategic benefits.
”It is an incontrovertible fact that Lagos derived its age-long excellence partly from the worthy contribution of private investment to its socio-economic development, hence, the commitment towards creating a conducive atmosphere for private businesses to strive.
”As carefully exemplified by Mr Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in his developmental agenda, T.H.E.M.E.S, the utmost goal is to make Lagos the most desirable investment destination in the world.
”The ability to attract investment remains the hallmark of healthy economies all over the world,” Hammond said. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)