February 02, 2018 /05:02 PM / Ministry of Budget and National Planning
Representatives of state governments on Wednesday met in Abuja at a
workshop organized by the Ministry of Budget and National Planning as part of the
integration process by the Federal Government to ensure full participation of
sub-regional governments in the Focus Labs scheduled to commence next month.
At the meeting, the
Minister, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, explained that the workshop was designed for
representatives of state governments to explain the essence of the labs set up
as part of Government’s effort to ensure the full and effective implementation
of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).
He explained that
the meeting was to explore how best state governments can be fully integrated
into the lab process because the full participation of state governments in the
labs is necessary to ensure its success.
reminded them that the ERGP was fashioned out to address the challenged economy
which the Muhammadu Buhari inherited as he pointed out that some positive
results are already manifesting following the adoption of the ERGP, including
the economy’s exit from recession in the second quarter of 2017.
have succeeded in reversing the rising rate of inflation, and since the first
quarter of 2017, the rate of inflation has been declining. Confidence in the
economy has returned. Evidence of this is the fact that we have successfully
reversed the capital flight we had been experiencing, and as a result our
foreign reserves have been rising. Indeed, our foreign reserves are currently
over US$40 billion, up from about US$23 billion as at September 2016. In
addition, our forex markets and rates have stabilised, and our ranking in the
World Bank Ease of Doing Business ranking has moved up 24 places from 169 in
2016 to 145 in 2017”, he indicated.
positive results are encouraging, the Minister said more still needs to be done
to achieve the ambitious targets of the ERGP and ensure that the benefits of
the improved economic performance is felt by most Nigerians. “And that is why
we are embarking on these focus labs to quicken the pace of the improvement of
the economy and the achievement of the targets we have set for ourselves in the
He noted that weak
implementation has always been the bane of past development plans which was why
the present administration decided to set up the ERGP Implementation Unit in
the Ministry to facilitate the delivery of key execution priorities of the
plan. It is this Implementation Unit that is organising the focus labs, he
The focus labs are
basically the bringing together of all relevant players: investors, both
domestic and international, subject matter specialists, government officials at
both Federal and State level, and other participants and stakeholders, to
mobilise high impact investments for large projects that would contribute
significantly to Gross Domestic Product and job-creation. The focus labs
therefore are fora for private sector investors to bring forward their
entry-point project or projects they would like to invest in, and discuss with
senior government officials in a closed setting.
explained that these are aimed at driving big, fast results in the selected
area. The labs will be starting with three key areas: Agriculture and
Transport, Manufacturing and Processing, and Power and Gas, reflecting some of
the execution priorities of the ERGP; but will continue subsequently in other
areas such as entertainment, services, sports and the media.
He recalled that at
the last National Economic Council meeting on Thursday January 18, 2018, he had
briefed the Governors on the labs and asked for the participation of States.
The Wednesday meeting was a follow-up engagement with representatives of the
States on the process.
important and critical that we work closely with the States as most of the
investments will be located in the States. In short, it is the State
Governments that will be hosting most of the investors. As the representatives
of the States we will be working with you to identify suitable projects that
meet certain criteria such as GDP contribution, job creation, project
readiness, amongst others.”
One of the targets
of the ERGP, he explained, is to create 15 million new jobs between 2017 and
2020, and the strategy is to collaborate with several stakeholders including
the State Governments to co-create solutions to make this happen; because the
Federal Government is very keen on the job creation impact of the projects that
would benefit from these labs.
projects that commence production in the States, he added, would translate to
thousands of jobs that enhance the livelihood of the people, and lead to
increase in income taxes to the State Governments.
government’s strategy, the Minister said the first step in the lab process is
for stakeholders to work jointly together to filter through the kind of
projects that would benefit most from the labs.
In the course of
the workshop, he said details of how these projects would be filtered and
short-listed will be explained by members of the ERGP Implementation team and
officials of the Nigeria Investment Promotions Council (NIPC).
Adviser (Media) to the Hon. Minister
- DAVOS: The Growing Dearth of Social Economic
- Attractive Opportunities Exist In Nigeria, Udoma
Tells Investors At Davos
- There is More to Economic Growth Than Numbers - LBS
EBS – December 2017
- Nigeria’s Merchandise Trade Grew Marginally Q-on-Q
But Significantly Y-on-Y in Q3 2017
- Total Value of Capital Imported into Nigeria in Q3
2017 Estimated at $4,145.1m - NBS
- Nigeria Ranked 125 Out of 137
Economies in the Global Competitiveness Report 2017–2018
- GDP Grew by 1.40% in Q3’17 from
0.72% in Q2’17; 2nd Consecutive Quarter of Positive Growth
- Buhari Returns: Hope High and
Challenges Daunting - LBS EBS - September 2017
- Current Account Back Into Surplus
- The EGRP Articulates Up To 60 Interventions and
Initiatives That Must be Executed and Completed
- Article IV vs. ERGP - The Third Way
- The ERGP needs a Roll-Out Plan -
- FG releases
Economic Recovery Plan for Nigeria