Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State on Sunday carried out an extensive tour of the multi-billion dollar Eko Atlantic City Project, pledging his government’s full support to see the project through.
This is just as he expressed confidence that the city when it is fully completed in the next 18 months, will not only boost the economy of the State but also increase its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
Speaking to journalists after the tour, Governor Ambode said, “I would like to express the total support of this government to this project because at the end of the day we need to grow the economy of Lagos and this obviously is going to have a multiplier effect on our IGR.
“We promise that we are going to grow our IGR to N30bn by 2017 and N50bn by 2018 and this project is a sure outlet in achieving that goal”.
He also expressed satisfaction on the infrastructure already put in place, saying that investors can now take advantage of the investment opportunities.
While commending the promoters of the EAC Project for their confidence in committing huge resources to the Nigerian economy, the governor, who was accompanied on the tour by some members of his cabinet, noted that their investment was a positive sign that Nigeria remains the investment hub in Africa.
He said: “Notwithstanding the economic recession that has befallen the country right now, we have come to also show that outside the recession, there is a whole lot of progress going on in the investment climate in Lagos State.
“We are very happy that the signs are looking very good for investment in Lagos. We are also very happy that we are doing everything possible to encourage investors to come into the State and I like to assure that we are committed to making this project a big success”.
Governor Ambode, who also inspected the 8.5km long shoreline wall, otherwise known as the ‘Great Wall of Lagos’, built to protect the EAC, said it was gratifying that the project will not only protect the new city but also protect the entire Victoria Island against any ocean surge, which was one of the primary reasons for the project.
He said: “This is a new and a bigger version of Victoria Island. We are going to have an Energy City here, a financial hub that is more or less going to run under a Free Trade Zone and so on”.
So far, out of the over 10 million square meters of the project, about six million square meters have been reclaimed, while there are 15 bridges and two tunnels designed with the project.
Earlier, Chairman of the EAC, Mr. Ronald Chagoury, said one of the first two residential buildings in the new city will be completed by the end of August, while the second will be ready before the end of the year, adding that the first office block will be ready before October 2016.
Mr. Chagoury described the project as an impressive financial district, which upon completion, would compete favorably with the financial district in Paris, France, and the 5th Avenue in New York, United States.
He added that the ‘Great Wall of Lagos’ was scientifically designed to withstand any ocean surge and that it was built with a lifespan of 1, 000 years.