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SPENDING ON INFRASTRUCTURE TO RISE IN NIGERIA

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It is only five years to 2015, the much talked about year in which Nigeria, as many other countries in the world are expected to achieve the UN Millennium Development Goals.

Also, the home grown Vision 2020 whereby Nigeria hopes to join the community of the twenty biggest economies in the world is just ten years away.

The governments at all levels should be unsettling! Companies that provide infrastructure services are positioning to seize the moment.

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SPENDING ON INFRASTRUCTURE TO RISE IN NIGERIA

  1. 1. SPENDING ON INFRASTRUCTURE TO RISE IN NIGERIA One of the issues I think that keep awake all night the leadership of the Federal Government of Nigeria and those looking to replace it, is that of improving the lots of Nigerians. Theoretically Yes! It is only five years to 2015, the much talked about year in which Nigeria, as many other countries in the world are expected to achieve the UN Millennium Development Goals. Also, the home grown Vision 2020 whereby Nigeria hopes to join the community of the twenty biggest economies in the world is just ten years away. The governments at all levels should be unsettling! According to the Delta State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan while inaugurating the state steering committee on Vision 2020, he said inter alia ‘in a fast-paced, globalised, post-industrial world, the challenge to catch-up is very daunting. We are confronted by gigantic undertaking of how to surmount our basic infrastructure gap, of poverty crisis, the human capital deficit and value reorientation. But the job must be done. For the faint hearted, it may seem an improbable dream to hope for a better future with such huge odds...we are anxious to leap from our third world status to a First World State’. The task is Herculean and demands focus, discipline and leadership from those in government. Interestingly, countries, states, cities and urban regions are increasingly competing with other places for attention, investment, visitors, shoppers, talent, events and the like. Like Delta State, other states are constantly on road shows, doing all they can to direct the lean foreign investment coming to Nigeria to their states. One of the four pre-requisite conditions for foreign investment identified by consultants at Baird’s CMC and the US Chamber of Commerce in a study on African Business Initiative is investment and maintenance of infrastructure-transportation, communications, electricity and security so that there will be a reliable society in which to operate. Infrastructure is the key!
  2. 2. Africa's most populous nation is in dire need of upgrading its infrastructure and providing new roads and housing to support a rapidly growing population of 150 million people. Its commercial hub and biggest city, Lagos, is in the process of completing its first toll road, a 50 billion naira expressway which is the country's first public private infrastructure project, while a spate of new hotels and apartment blocks have also sprung up in recent months reported the Next Newspapers. Companies that provide infrastructure services are positioning to seize the moment. The Nigeria’s cement industry is gearing up for a sharp increase in output in the coming years as government and private sector infrastructure spending rises. According to the Cement Manufacturers' Association of Nigeria (CMAN), production was set to rise to 20 million metric tonnes by 2012; almost double the level expected this year and a figure which could turn the country from a net importer to an exporter. NDUDI OSAKWE Consultant, INFOPLUS inquiry@ibgnigeria.com

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