Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Lagos State, Mr. Ben Akabueze, has said the private sector in the country is to finance the construction of the 4th mainland bridge with N220 billion.
Speaking at the 2013 Seminar/Luncheon of the Financial Services Group of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, LCCI, Akabueze stated that the federal or states government would not be financing the 4th Mainland Bridge as private sector investors have made plans to invest N220 billion in the construction of the bridge.
Akabueze also noted that the state requires a much larger budget than it currently operates, adding that inadequate revenues constitute the principal impediment to achieving a larger budget.
“Lagos State has consistently recorded good budgetary performance, more than any other state government in Nigeria. We have tried to make the people to own the budget, and make it work for them because effective budgetary systems and implementation have contributed significantly to socio-economic development in Lagos.”
According to him, investment in infrastructure simultaneously tackles a number of challenges such as job creation, poverty reduction, lower cost of operations for manufacturing and commercial enterprises.
“Empirically-proven correlation between investment in infrastructure and economic growth (a World bank study of 39 African countries covering 1990-2005 shows that if our infrastructure was developed to standard of Mauritius (best infrastructure in Africa) GDP growth would rise by about 2.5 percent per annum.
“Percentage allocated to sectors reflects government’s priorities and sustenance of past trend highest priority goes to Economic Affairs Sector. In line with the policy thrust of government, infrastructure, health and education sectors are being gradually notched up to meet global benchmarks,” he said.