Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State on Friday said that the state would fulfill its outstanding counterpart funding of 15.01million dollars to the Lekki Free Trade Zone (LFTZ) to improve infrastructure and boost development there.
Ambode said this during an assessment tour of the zone.
“We will accelerate a quick clear of our outstanding counterpart funding for the zone.
“In essence, we expect that in the next six months, we should be having an investment of over 60 million dollars.
“I believe that when we invest our share of the fund and the China Africa Lekki Investment Limited (CALIL) does its own, it will bring a major development to the zone,’’ Ambode said.
The governor who said he was confident that in the next 24 months, there will be a remarkable change in the zone, urged the contractor for the Deep Sea Port in the zone to begin work by the end of April as scheduled.
“The port is very critical to us. We will have more investors if the port is completed. It is very critical to the development of the zone and if not developed, there may not be return on investment made into the zone,’’ Ambode said.
The governor who lauded the communities for maintaining peace said that about 800 hectares of land left to be handed over to the zone would be handed over in another six months.
“We have decided that we will ensure that the project is actualised. We are ready to make the Eastern axis of Lagos state, the economic hub of the state,’’ he said.
Ambode said there were plans to partner stakeholders in the LFTZ to dualise Eleko-Ibeju Road beyond the zone to sustain investments in the area.
“With the ongoing construction of seaport, airport and others, it is obvious that a single road will not be sufficient to serve the zone,’’ he said.
Earlier the chairman of Lekki Free Trade Zone Development Company, Mr Biodun Dabiri, had announced that no less than six billion dollars had been invested there in the last one year.
Dabiri urged the state government to urgently address the present challenges in the zone for it to open its vision of diversifying earnings, crafting employment opportunities and attracting foreign investments.
Also, the Managing Director of Lekki Free Zone Development Company, Mr Ding Yonghua, called for an alternative road to the zone to accommodate the high number of trucks and ensure the safety of the surrounding communities.