The Lagos government has revealed that new investments in the Lekki Free Trade Zone (LFTZ) are now over N1.22trn ($4 bn), in addition to the multi-billion dollars Dangote Refinery and Fertilizer plants being constructed within the zone.
This information was disclosed by the Lagos State Commissioner for Commerce, Industry and Cooperatives, Rotimi Ogunleye, during the annual press briefing of his ministry on Monday, May 8, 2017.
Mr Rotimi noted that there are about $15bn investments (N4.58tn) in place within the free trade zone, while over 116 investors had registered interest with LFTZ out of which 16 had commenced full operations.
In the same vein, the Special Adviser to Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos state on Overseas Affairs and Investment (Lagos Global), Professor Ademola Abbas,noted that the commercial city is currently attracting foreign direct investments across all vital sectors of the economy.
“Since its inception, Office of Overseas Affairs & Investment has encouraged investor’s confidence in Lagos as a place to conduct business and live in. It is noteworthy that this state has attracted more foreign direct investments in the first two years of this administration than it did in the past 15 years, even with an economic recession. This points to the fact that Lagos as an emerging market is becoming the financial hub and a preferred investment destination in Africa.
“The Office has been able to streamline the time, process and cost associated with investment decision making and operations. This has, in turn, created employment within and boosted the GDP of the state. This feat has been achieved not only by the office but in collaboration with the other Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the state and federal government,” he said.
He added that Lagos as the economic capital of Nigeria and the West African sub-region with a 136 billion USD GDP, accounts for over 90 per cent of Nigeria’s foreign trade flow, contributes 30 per cent to the country’s GDP and also accounts for 65 per cent of its manufacturing activity.
Abbas noted that corruption perception of the country is affecting investment prospects to the state.
“We have not done well in updating information and knowledge. We need to take deliberate steps to improve the image of Lagos and indeed Nigeria, especially in the eyes of the world. There is need to make concerted efforts to change these negative perceptions.”
The government revealed investors who had successfully commenced operations in Lagos as Trans Link Development Capital Ltd; Trend Media City Development; the Lekki Free Trade Zone; Knauf Group; Epe Car Crush Scrap and JC Decaux Nigeria Outdoor Advertising Ltd., among others