The Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has said the State is keen on taking full advantage of African investment windows in order to make the State a one-stop shop for investments.
Speaking in Abuja at the 2019 African Investment Forum Roadshow on Tuesday, Fayemi said his administration has commenced steps towards making the State a destination of choice for investors.
The investment forum, which was organised by the African Development Bank and African Finance Corporation, was attended by local and international investment firms as well as representatives from the public sector.
Fayemi, who is in partnership talk with the AfDB for infrastructure and agricultural development of Ekiti State, said it is not enough to approach a market place with “bankable projects” but efforts must also be geared towards making the business environment conducive for investment.
He said: “In Ekiti State, we are preparing for this year’s (Africa Investment) Forum and are keen to take full advantage of the market place.
“We have passed the law establishing the Ekiti State Development and Investment Promotion Agency and are currently operationalising the agency.
“Once the Agency commences full operations, it will provide investors with a one-stop shop to deal with investment related matters.”
While noting that Nigeria needs about $3 trillion over the next 30 years to bridge her infrastructure financing gap, Fayemi said it is inevitable that the country seeks “private capital to deliver the infrastructure stock required to grow our economy and put millions of young Nigerians in jobs”.
Fayemi, who stated that the AIF’s roadshow would complement a lot of positive initiatives of the Federal Government, added that Nigeria is open to business even as the Nigerian Governors’ Forum is focusing attention on investment promotion and job creation.
Fayemi said: “I am confident that after this roadshow, both the government and private sector institutions will have a better appreciation of how to present bankable projects that will lead to Nigeria receiving a much higher investment commitment from the AIF, compared to our outing in 2018.”
Earlier, AfDB Senior Country Director (Nigeria), Ebrima Faal, had said the roadshow was aimed at changing the face of investment in Africa, adding that it was a multi-stakeholders approach dedicated to advancing development in the continent.
Faal put the Bank’s 2018 closed deals in Nigeria at $7.1 billion, while it funded projects worth $38.7 billion in Africa.
Also speaking, the Senior Director, African Finance Corporation, Taiwo Adeniji, said infrastructure has always been a major challenge in Africa as its deficit has reduced the continent’s GDP by 40 per cent.
Adeniji said the deficits are massive in the various sectors but efforts are geared towards “changing the narrative by matching funding with good projects”.