The Director-General, Infrastructural Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Mr Michael Ohiani says Nigeria is yet to upscale its infrastructure stock to the level that will drive the economy as expected.Ohiani said this while delivering a Keynote Address virtually at the 2022 WorldStage Economic Summit(WES) with the theme : ‘Nigeria’s Economy: Bridging the Infrastructural Gap” on Wednesday in Lagos.According to him, while the major problem facing the economy is the lack of adequate infrastructure, the government alone cannot afford to provide the funding necessary to achieve the infrastructure up to the level needed.Ohiani said the desired level would stimulate the much needed economic growth.“It is a known fact that infrastructure drives economic growth and development of any nation.“Our nation has over the years, produced several development plans, but unfortunately, we have not yet upscaled our infrastructure stock to the level which will drive the economy as expected,” he said.According to him, the Federal Government is totally committed to the development of infrastructure through Public Private Partnerships (PPP).Ohiani said this is evidenced by President Muhammadu Buhari’s continuous commitment, as provided in the 2021-2025 National Development plan (NDP) which seeks to encourage more private sector participation in National infrastructure development.He said: “The NDP has a projected N348.1 trillion, with the entire government of the federation programmed to provide about N49 trillion.“The remaining amount is programmed to be provided by the private sector.“This has been the trending truth over the years, that the revenue to our government cannot meet the needed infrastructure quantum and speed.”The acting director-general noted that the ICRC Act of 2005 came into existence to enable private sector participation in the development and operation of critical infrastructure, which was hitherto the obligation of the government to provide.Ohiani emphasised that the country needed to have more investments and innovative ideas on infrastructure development using already proven and trusted techniques from around the world.Ohiani also said that there was need for more commitment from the private sector towards the actualisation of those goals.He said that in the past 14 years, ICRC has gotten Federal Executive Council approval for more than 50 projects, amounting to more than N3 trillion in private sector funds and currently providing regulatory guidance on more than 200 projects.“As part of the ICRC mandate, we gazette and publish a list of PPP eligible projects annually, so that prospective investors will know when and what to invest in.“As at May 2022, there are 77 post-contract PPP projects under implementation at the ICRC Projects Disclosure Portal (www.ppp.icrc.gov.ng or www.icrc.gov.ng).“The portal is the first disclosure portal in the world, established in collaboration with the world bank.“As at May 2022, there are 197 pre-contract projects at Development and Procurement phases at the ICRC Website a between 2010 and 2021.“Also, under the regulatory guidance of the ICRC, the Nigerian government has approved PPP projects worth more than 8 billion dollars.“As at May 2022, the ICRC has issued 128 Outline Business Case Compliance Certificates, which show their bankability.“In the same period, the ICRC has issued 50 Full Business Case Compliance Certificates to date,” he said.According to him, the continuing success of PPP’s around the world and even in Africa shows us that government can share in the responsibility of providing infrastructure given the right guidelines, and within the regulatory framework provided by the ICRC establishment Act 2005.The acting director-general noted that government had laid the foundation in the ICRC act, saying, “It is now time for the private sector to take advantage of this huge opportunity to invest and develop critical infrastructure through private finance initiatives”.He said ICRC is opened to investors and could be reached for advice and guidance in the development of PPP projects.Ohiani commended WorldStage for organising such forum to brainstorm on the challenges causing infrastructural gap in the country and contributing in proferring solutions to it.In his welcome address, Mr Segun Adeleye, Executive Officer (CEO), WorldStage said that the country is currently facing huge infrastructural gap that has hindered the desire to exploit its rich natural and human resources to stimulate development.Adeleye stated that Nigeria was ranked number 116 competitive nation in the world out of 140 countries in the 2019 edition of the Global Competitiveness Report published by the World Economic Forum, largely due to the poor state of its infrastructure.He noted that the money needed to attain the level of infrastructure desired will not come from the Federal budget ; hence, the approval for the creation of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) in 2021 by President Muhammadu Buhari.The CEO said that the country is availed with huge potential in the PPP option by ICRC to address infrastructure deficit.A panel discussion led by Mr Dare Mayowa, Publisher, Global Financial Digest resolved that Nigerians must recruit the right leaders that will make various institutions work effectively and efficiently ; hence fill the infrastructural gap.Other discussants at the panel were Mr Soji Adeleye, CEO Alfecity Institution, Mrs Maureen Chigbo, Publisher, Realnews Managazine, Dr Joy Ogaji, CEO, Association of Power Generation Companies, Nigeria. 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Dr Oluseye Ajuwon, a lecturer of Economics at the University of Lagos, has charged the Federal Government to maintain good governance that ensures public infrastructures are well protected, managed, and maintained.Ajuwon gave the advice at the 2022 WorldStage Economic Summit (WES) with the theme: “Nigeria’s Economy: Bridging The Infrastructural Gap” on Wednesday in Lagos.According to him, true patriotic leadership is most needed in ensuring sustainable infrastructure development.Ajuwon said that infrastructure which include buildings, roads, power, transportation, communication, healthcare, education, water supply, sanitation, among others remain the basic physical and organisational structures and facilities.These, he explained were needed for the operation of a society or enterprise.Ajuwon, also a researcher, said that infrastructure remains the underlying foundation or basic framework upon which the economy of a country is built.According to him, infrastructure is key to economic development, particularly as it relates to the construction, management, and regulation of infrastructure projects.The lecturer said that the underdevelopment of physical infrastructures had been the major constraints confronting the Nigeria economic and social development over the years.Ajuwon said those critical infrastructure gradually decayed over time due to neglect.“The poor performance and inefficiency in the operation of the nation’s infrastructure has been described as major constraints to industrial performance and productivity growth.“As a result, the average growth rate of the national economy has stagnated and stunted around five per cent for many years because the state of our infrastructure does not encourage investment, ” he said.According to him, government, investors, lenders, and all stakeholders in project development must commit to providing pragmatic and sustainable infrastructure that meet international best standards.Ajuwon advised that on-going and future developments in the country should be closely monitored while ensuring that the projects are awarded on merits, and practical timelines are given to contractors and strictly followed for completion.The researcher urged the government to continue its fight against corruption, address excessive spending in governance and direct saved resources to providing infrastructures for the overall growth of the economy.He maintained that government facilities should be appropriately managed and put into effective and efficient use while abandoned projects should be resuscitated, and less impactful projects, where necessary, should be curtailed.“It is expected that Public Private Partnership (PPP) could be a viable avenue for securing the private partnership in the management of these projects.“Credit facilities for infrastructural projects should be made easily accessible with minimum interest rates, as this will serve as a boost to investment and PPP in infrastructural projects. “The government could also consider giving tax incentives, developing residential housing estates around the project locations, amongst other things.“This will drive human traffic to those project areas and make the project more viable, practicable, feasible, and appealing to the private sectors,” he said.In his welcome address, Mr Segun Adeleye, Executive Officer (CEO), WorldStage, said that the country is currently facing huge infrastructural gap that had hindered the desire to exploit its rich natural and human resources to stimulate development.Adeleye said that Nigeria was ranked number 116 competitive nation in the world out of 140 countries in the 2019 Edition of the Global Competitiveness Report published by the World Economic Forum, largely due to the poor state of its infrastructure.He noted that the money needed to attain the level of infrastructure desired would not come from the Federal budget; hence the approval for the creation of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) in 2021 by President Muhammadu Buhari.According to Adeleye, the country is being availed with huge potential in the PPP option by ICRC to address infrastructure deficit.“Unlike government funding, private financing sources portend an uncapped and near-limitless pool of funding for investments in infrastructure through banks, bonds, among others.“The focus of the WES 2022 is to examine the infrastructural gap challenges and proffer solutions that would significantly help at improving prospects of achieving the nation’s economic potential,” he said.A panel discussion led by Mr Dare Mayowa, Publisher, Global Financial Digest, resolved that Nigerians must recruit the right leaders that would make various institutions work effectively and efficiently.This, he noted would fill the infrastructural gap in the country.Other discussants at the panel were; Mr Soji Adeleye, CEO Alfecity Institution, Mrs Maureen Chigbo, Publisher, Realnews Managazine, Dr Joy Ogaji, CEO, Association of Power Generation Companies, Nigeria.
span style="font-size: inherit">As major Nigerian political parties choose their presidential candidates for the 2023 general election, WorldStage Economic Summit 2022 is to focus on the nation’s infrastructural deficit.
According to a statement by World Stage Ltd., the organiser, the objective of the summit with the theme, ‘Nigeria’s Economy: Bridging the infrastructural gap’, is to examine the infrastructural challenges in the country.
The statement said the summit would also proffer solutions that would significantly help at improving prospects of achieving the nation’s economic potential.
It said that the summit which would hold virtually through zoom and physically at the IBIS Hotels, Ikeja, Lagos, would have the lead paper delivered by Dr Oluseye Ajuwon, a lecturer and researcher in economics at the University of Lagos.
The statement said policy makers from the Federal Government, state governments, National Assembly, private sector, and the academia, would deliberate on values-driven, high-standard, and transparent infrastructure partnership among other issues.
It said, “Nigeria is currently facing huge infrastructural gap that has hindered desire to exploit its rich natural andk human resources to stimulate kill k until development.
“Though, the Nigerian Government approved infrastructure related Public-Private Partnership (PPP) worth $9 billion between 2010 and 2021.
“This is under the regulatory guidance of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), about $1.5 trillion is still needed over a 10-year period to achieve an appreciable level of the National Infrastructure Stock.”
WES 2022 is the 6th in the series of 10 editions since WorldStage consolidated its economic conferences under the umbrella of an economic summit.
It is conceived to address economic challenges through diagnoses and application of practicable solutions with public and private sector engagement in a research and innovation driven platform.
This is to inspire new thinking in business initiative, policy formulation or implementation, economic reform and development.
World Stage Ltd., is a research and technology driven Africa focused firm with expertise in multidimensional communication services that helps public and private organisations to realise their full potential.