VENTURES AFRICA – The World Bank’s Director of Finance and Private Sector Development for Africa, Mr Gaiv Tata has reaffirmed the bank’s commitment to assist Lagos State Government in the development of Lekki Free Trade Zone (LFTZ).
Tata reiterated the global financial institution’s support when he led some officials of the bank on a courtesy visit to the Lagos state’s Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Mrs Olusola Oworu.
According to him, the World bank is determined to assist the state government to develop the zone to the status of an international business centre.
However, the Director identified some likely constraints that might delay the take-off of the zone, but added that these would not deter it from achieving its aims.
He promised to mobilise operators in the private and financial sectors to the area to create employment for Nigerian youths.
“Investors and companies all over the world will be encouraged to make the zone an investors’ choice as obtained in China and other developed countries.
“The earlier the necessary infrastructure needed for the zone are put in place, the better,” Tata remarked.
Earlier, the commissioner had pleaded for more financial assistance from the bank and the Federal Government to develop some infrastructure within the zone.
The commissioner said, the State Government may not be able to execute some of these projects independently owing to the demand and attention required by other sectors in the state.
Oworu added that the government had entered into an agreement with a solar energy producing company to make electricity available at the site temporarily.
She also hinted that negotiation was still going with the Federal Government and the Nigeria Gas Company to provide stable power supply to the area.
Lagos state is the commercial hub of Nigeria and is set to be one of the most populous cities in the world. The state has been involved in several infrastructural development projects, the LFTZ is one of them.