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AfDB Partners Nigeria to Bridge $3trn Infrastructure Gap

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The African Development Bank (AfDB) said it would assist the Nigerian government to bridge its infrastructure gap estimated to cost about 3 trillion dollars in the next 26 years.

Mr Ebrima Faal, Senior Director, AfDB Nigeria, said this at the Africa Investment Forum (AIF) Road show on Tuesday in Abuja.

Faal said the AIF idea came from the reality that the government alone could not finance the infrastructure gap in the country which made it difficult to achieve sustainable development.

“Indeed, over the last decade, and despite impressive growth rates in most of the continent, Africa’s infrastructure needs remain formidable with annual financing gap between 130 and 107 billion dollars annually.

“Nigeria’s infrastructure cumulative financing needs are estimated to reach 3 trillion dollars by 2044 or about 100 billion dollars annually.

“This is all happening at a time when public sector finances are extremely pressured.

“There is therefore a critical need to change the current funding mix and create partnerships to finance infrastructure and other projects in Africa,” he said.

To this end, Faal said the AfDB planned to assist Nigeria put together a pipeline of bankable projects ahead of the Africa Investment Forum coming up in November 7 to 9 in Johannesburg, South Africa.

He said the bank, working with multilateral institutions and the private sector, would help Nigeria to develop investment-ready projects for investors, fund managers and others at the forum in South Africa.

“The African Development Bank is committed to the development of effective public-private-partnerships and has been developing new innovative financing programmes, instruments and partnerships.

“This is to facilitate the financing and construction of critical infrastructure on the continent.

“The AIF is an investment market place that aims to showcase key projects currently under development and assess how those projects will be financed, operated and delivered successfully to maximise efficiency and project success,” he said.

Also, Ms Stella Kilonzo, a Senior Director at the AfDB in charge of the African Investment Forum, said through the forum the bank aimed to de-risk investments in Africa.

She said at the moment, Nigeria and Africa at large, struggled to attract significant capital due to poor preparation and packaging of project proposals, limited availability of tools for credit enhancement and risk coverage among others.

She said in Nigeria, the bank would fast track the Sustainable Development Goals by developing bankable projects in the agricultural, energy and infrastructure sectors, among others.

Meanwhile, the Co-ordinator, Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) Mr Folarin Alayande, said the Federal Government had identified key priority projects that would spur sustainable growth in the country.

He said to deliver fast results on mobilising private investments and job creation, the investment focus of the country was in the areas of agriculture and transportation, manufacturing and processing, power and gas supply.

To this end, he said Nigeria would require about 22.5 billion dollars of investment commitments by year 2020 to cover 164 projects, spread over six geo political zones.

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Lancaster University Honours Ozigbo, MD/CEO Transcorp Hotels

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Mr. Valentine Ozigbo, managing director/chief executive, Transcorp Hotels Plc, was on Friday conferred the award of a Distinguished Alumni of the Lancaster University. The award was conferred on him at a special convocation ceremony of the university held at its Ghana Campus.

 

Prof. Mark Smith, University’s Vice Chancellor, who spoke during the event, praised Ozigbo for his laudable achievements recorded over the years since he graduated from the university.

 

He said, “Your extraordinary achievements in both the banking and luxury hospitality industries are impressive, as is your passion for promoting youth empowerment through initiatives such as youth leadership forums.

 

“This award is therefore to appreciate these achievements as we believe that your contribution to your field will be an inspiration to current Lancaster University students and their parents,” he noted.

 

Ozigbo who expressed delight over the honour accorded to him by his alma mater, commended the ideals of the school, which according to him contributed immensely towards molding him to the heights he had achieved till date.

 

He said, “My studies at Lancaster University laid a solid foundation in my life for the progress I achieved, because soon after my graduation, I started off with then Standard Trust Bank (which became United Bank for Africa), and was charged with the responsibilities that had global outlook in nature, including managing investment banking clients, embassies and multilaterals and later on global expansion.

 

“So, the fact that this was a top international University and the specialized discipline I majored in, among others, contributed to the decision to work in these international areas. I excelled in each of these areas because Lancaster University exposed and prepared me well. Therefore, I give credit to Lancaster University for my modest achievements,” he said.

 

Ozigbo, a Chevening Scholar, graduated in 2004 from the Lancaster University Management School England with an outstanding Masters Degree in Finance, with Distinction. He also holds a Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree in Accounting (1994), emerging the best Student in the faculty, and Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Banking and Finance (2000), both from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

 

He is a fellow of many professional bodies, notably Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria.

 

Since leaving Lancaster University in 2004, Mr. Ozigbo has achieved a lot in both professional, personal and community life. He spent a total of 17 years in the banking industry rising to the level of General Manager before transitioning to the hospitality industry where he led the positive transformation of Transcorp Hotels Plc for over 7 years, winning many awards locally, regionally and globally, including Seven Stars Luxury Hospitality CEO of the Year Award (presented at a global event in Spain).

 

Ozigbo is also known for his youth empowerment works. Apart from leading the effort, with another friend of his in donating books from Lancaster University to the University of Nigeria, where they first graduated from, he has been involved in a number of mentorship, youth empowerment and community development initiatives.

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Hyde Satisfies Consumer Demands with New Retail Station

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Hyde, a global oil and commodities trading company and producer of premium lubricants in Nigeria, has launched a new retail station in Egbeda, Lagos.

This station, the sixth from the company, is in line with the company’s vision to be one of the top five most respected brands in petroleum products trading and delivery in Nigeria.

Equipped with innovative technology, the station is designed to satisfy consumers through product and service delivery.

It will run for 18 hours daily dispensing petrol, diesel and kerosene. Also available for purchase at the station are Hyde Energy’s range of automotive lubricants with various options from synthetic, multi-grade, monograde, specialty oils for tailor-made applications and all types of greases.

Mr. Oladimeji Edwards, CEO of Hyde Limited, stated that the new station is inspired by the Company’s commitment to provide efficient fueling solutions for customers.

“The launch of this station in Egbeda comes as part of our efforts to bring energy closer to our customers. We remain committed to maintaining exceptionally high standards in our product and service offerings and we are certain that our customers will get the best experience at our stations”.

“Quality and excellence define our services and we deliver on our promise through exceptional business management. Our customers are assured of high-quality products at the right pump price and quantity at our stations”. Mr. Edwards added.

On his part, the Head of Retail & Commercial Sales at Hyde Limited, Mr. Sani Usman said, “This new station is a step further in the expansion of our retail fuel business. Hyde sources the highest quality products from highly reputable companies which are stored in own and 3rd -party terminals for onward distribution to Hyde Outlets under strict quality control processes and procedures.

We plan to expand our retail footprints across the country with the next area of entry being the South-East geopolitical zone of the country. By the end of 2018, we would have increased the number of our retail outlets to 10”.

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People in Peaceful Countries more Pessimistic about Peace Prospects than Those in Conflict Zones- According to New Poll

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People in more peaceful countries are more pessimistic about prospects for peace than those in conflict environments, according to a survey of 15 countries commissioned by International Alert and the British Council.

 

The Peace Perceptions Poll 2018, conducted in partnership with global polling agency RIWI, asked people around the world about their perceptions of peace and conflict.

 

It found that the UK topped the list of pessimistic countries, followed by Brazil, the US and Hungary. 40% of respondents in the UK said prospects for peace and security in their country will get worse in the next five years, making them more negative than those living in conflict areas, including Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

 

Across the world, ‘lack of jobs and ability to provide for one’s family’ was seen as the main reason that would push people to violent action.

 

This was followed by a ‘sense of injustice’ and a ‘need to improve one’s social status’. The poll also found that terrorism and criminal violence are people’s top security concerns globally.

 

Over 110,000 people participated in the survey, which was carried out online in Brazil, Colombia, DRC, Hungary, India, Lebanon, Myanmar, Nigeria, the Philippines, South Africa, Syria, Tunisia, Ukraine, the United States of America and the United Kingdom, with targeted polling separately undertaken in Northern Ireland.

 

83% of global respondents said having political influence was fundamental for peace and security, with 90% saying the same about access to economic opportunities.

 

People in DRC and South Africa felt the highest levels of political exclusion, with 50% and 44% of those polled respectively saying they are less able to influence the political decisions that affect them, compared to five years ago. This was followed by the UK (41%), Hungary (40%) and the US (37%).

 

Where people felt they had less political influence, they predominantly blamed it on ‘corruption and bribery’ in politics. This was most strongly felt in South Africa, Ukraine and Nigeria.

 

Those who thought they had more political influence attributed it extensively to social media and technology, which ranked top with 28% choosing it.

 

Interestingly, those who felt they had least access to economic opportunities lived in middle- to high-income countries, including Hungary, Ukraine, the UK, Lebanon, the US and South Africa.

 

Most respondents said the most effective way to create long-term peace was through ‘dealing with the reasons why people fight in the first place’ (27%), followed by ‘supporting societies and communities to resolve conflict peacefully’ (26%).

 

Asked where their governments should spend more to promote peace, the top response was ‘dealing with the reasons why people fight in the first place’, followed by ‘teaching peace, tolerance and conflict resolution in schools’.

 

Globally, military interventions had the least support, with only 9%selecting it.

 

Harriet Lamb, CEO of International Alert said: “At a time when conflict is on the rise, the poll shows strong popular support for peacebuilding approaches, which focus on dealing with the reasons why people fight in the first place.

 

“The public clearly understand what is needed to build peace. People have crisis fatigue – they want long-term solutions.

 

“Politicians should focus on how to break the cycle of violence by investing more in peacebuilding.”

 

Professor Jo Beall, Director Education and Society, British Council said: “Positive peacebuilding is not just the absence of violent conflict, but the rebuilding of trust and the restoration of relationships that serve the needs of the whole population.

 

“In seeking to understand people’s experience of conflict, and their aspirations for peace, we believe these findings will be useful for leaders and policy-makers facing up to the challenges of peacebuilding.”

 

 

 

 

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