Economic experts Monday said Nigeria requires about N31 trillion yearly to bridge the nation’s infrastructure gap.
The country, they said, may be heading for economic doom if the government failed to provide the enabling environment for the private sector to operate.
Bemoaning the nation’s infrastructure deficit as a result of inadequate funding by government at all levels, the experts said government at all tiers spend less than N5 trillion on infrastructure.
The submissions were made during the one year anniversary of the National Assembly Business Environment Roundtable (NASSBER) held at the National Assembly.
In a keynote address, an economic expert, Dr Doyin Salami said NASSBER should operate on realities on the ground by concentrating on infrastructure legislation.
This, he said, would give the private sector the leverage to drive the process of economic growth and development, as the public sector is already overwhelmed with attendant infrastructure deficit and low development index.
Salami said, “Government cannot on its own fund infrastructure , available statistics revealed that Nigeria needs $100bn or N31trillion on yearly basis to fund infrastructure as against the N3trillion to N5trillion being spent by government across the three tiers on yearly basis with attendant infrastructural deficit, high rate of employment and other worrying indices like over 17% inflation rate.
“Others are Nigeria’s low ranking in Human Development Index across the globe which is 152 and 169 in business indices in terms of ease of doing business aside ranking 158 in global competitiveness”, he said.
According to him, declarations of economic growth by government officials do not often take into consideration factors of growth are not the same as development and inclusiveness.
This, he added, does not necessarily reflect in the living condition of majority of the people.
Salami therefore urged the federal lawmakers to ensure that laws or legislations made by them impact positively on ordinary Nigerians.
“NASSBER should not just be about legislation but about impacts of such legislations on the people and in this wise, until we see improvement in the lives of our Nigerians, NASSBER cannot be said to have achieved its aim”, he said.