19 April 2019

Nigeria: Govt to Speed Up Critical Infrastructure in Creating Friendly Business Environment

The federal government has said it would intensify efforts in the provision of basic infrastructure such as roads, power generation, rail lines and water in order to create an enabling environment for manufacturing and other businesses in the country.

Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, in a chat with media men in Lagos, explained that these basic infrastructures were meant to ease time and cost of access to raw materials, finished goods and ensure wider market for the sale of manufactured products.

He said that the President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government was keen to improve infrastructure capacity in the country in line with its ease of doing business agenda and also to boost trade facilitation in key sectors of the economy.

The minister noted that the federal government's focus on previously comatose road projects on major arterial routes like the Enugu-Port Harcourt Highway, Apapa-Oworonshoki Highway, Lagos-Ibadan Highway, Kano-Maiduguri Highway, Lokoja-Benin Highway and Kaduna Eastern By pass was not accidental; adding that it was targeted at increasing manufacturing capacity and national productivity.

According to him, such projects were now making steady progress towards early completion, saying that on completion, it would galvanise rapid economic growth for the country.

Speaking on the government's Executive Order 007, Fashola explained that the administration realised that using public funds were not adequate to provide the desired level of infrastructure due to other competitive demands on public resources, so policies had been put in place to encourage the private sector to partner with the federal government in the provision of these critical infrastructures.

He said, "In this regard, the Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government in a bid to create an enabling environment for manufacturing and other businesses has intensified activities in the provision of basic infrastructure such as roads, power generation, rail lines and water.

Improved transport infrastructure is expected to improve the time and cost of access to raw materials/finished goods and ensure wider market for the sale of manufactured products."

He however, said being aware that public funds were not adequate to provide the desired level of infrastructure due to other competitive demands on public resources, policies have been put in place to encourage the private sector to partner with the federal government in the provision of these critical infrastructures.

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