The Lagos State government has said that the effects of the nation’s economic recession in the State was cushioned by prudent management of resources and expenditure on capital projects that enabled small and medium scale enterprises to thrive.
The State Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mr. Akinyemi Ashade stated this on Tuesday at Alausa, during the ongoing Ministerial Press briefing to commemorate the second year in office of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode and the 50 years anniversary of Lagos State.
The Commissioner said the Akinwunmi Ambode administration was able to manage the Lagos economy when the country was in recession through prudent and stringent management of available resources, noting that the State deployed various measures in driving implementation and execution of projects and programmes to cushion the effects of the economic recession witnessed across the nation in 2016.
He said: “In 2016, the State embarked on more capital projects and created conducive environment for small and medium scale businesses to thrive. The N662.588bn budgeted for year 2016 performed at 80 per cent, the Recurrent Expenditure performed at N237.932 bn representing 92 per cent while Capital Expenditure closed at N290.731bn representing 72 per cent.
“Our target now is to meet our revenue projections of N30 bn monthly in 2017 and N50 bn monthly in 2018 through improved reforms aimed at increasing revenue collections in various revenue agencies such as Lands, Physical Planning as well as the continous enumeration of properties for efficient collection of Land Use Charge.
While admitting that influx of people from other States into Lagos have impacted on unemployment rate in the State, Ashade reiterated that the State has a plan of using its Empowerment Trust Fund to assist budding entrepreneurs, thereby enlarging the people in the State’s tax net.
According to him, the State has the capacity to improve on its 5 million tax paying people to 10 million, adding that it’s all about focus, about programmes of the present administration such as ‘Ease of Doing Business’ and judicious deployment of Economic Trust Fund.
The Commissioner further disclosed that the State government is committed to urban renewal with Ilaje in Bariga, Amukoko in Ajeromi-Ifelodun Local Government Ares and other blighted areas in focus. This he maintained was aimed at improving living standard of Lagosians.
In his words, “Study conducted by this Ministry has indicated that the State will need up to 50 billion dollars expended on infrastructural development in the next 10 years.”
“The State government will therefore foster a robust environment for increased private sector investments through Public Private Partnership initiatives and other strategies for increased Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) as initiated by Office of Overseas Affairs and Investment (Lagos Global)” the Commissioner said.
Ashade also added that Lagos State has commenced preparations for its update to compute the State Gross Domestic Product (SGDP) for the period 2011 -2016, noting that the State was the first to compute her GDP amongst the States in the federation of Nigeria in 2010 with the technical assistance of the National Bureau of Statistics.