The Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mr. Lamido Yuguda on Thursday said Nigeria still has a long way to go in bridging infrastructure deficit.
He however tasked the private sector to rise up to the challenge of sourcing long term financing from the capital market that would fund the provision of infrastructure in the West African Sub region.
Yuguda spoke at a briefing on the forthcoming West Africa Capital Market Conference scheduled to hold in Lagos between October 25-26 with the theme: “Infrastructural deficit and sustainable financing in an integrated West Africa Capital Market” with over 300 stakeholders expected.
Daily Trust reports that Nigeria particularly has a huge infrastructural deficit which requires up to $3 trillion to bridge over the next 30 years according to the Reviewed National Integrated Infrastructure Master Plan which says Africa’s most populous nation must spend $150bn annually to achieve this target.
Yuguda said there was the need for the private sector to get involved in funding of infrastructures, saying the capital market provides a sustainable funding option for infrastructure financing.
“Nigeria is one of the biggest countries in the world in terms of population and we still have a long way to go. You need adequate infrastructure to raise the standard of living and make Nigeria a more livable country,” he said.
He disclosed that in many countries, the responsibility for the provision of infrastructure has been steadily moving away from government to the private sector owing to increasing demand and reduced ability of the government to fund infrastructure alone.
The conference is being jointly organised by the West Africa Securities Regulators Association (WASRA) comprising SEC Nigeria, SEC Ghana, and Autorite de Marche’s Financiers or AMF-UMOA, in collaboration with Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the West Africa Capital Market Integration Council (WACMIC), and the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI).
Yuguda added, “This deficit also poses a significant challenge to the region’s sustainable development. To address this gap, there is a growing need to adopt innovative financing mechanisms, and sustainable financing options to mobilize the desired funds to meet the region’s critical infrastructure needs, foster economic growth, and achieve sustainable development goals.
“The conference will bring together a distinguished array of experts, regulators, policymakers, and industry leaders who will share their insights, experiences, and strategies to proffer solutions to the region’s massive infrastructure deficit.”