THE Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) on Wednesday said investment pledges by foreign and local investors rose to $23.30 billion in 2021.
The Commission disclosed that the total investment tracked in 2021 is 39 per cent more than the value tracked in 2020 which was $16.74 billion .
The ICIR reports that this represents a $6.56 billion increase.
Acting Executive Secretary/CEO of the Commission Emeka Offor who disclosed this in Abuja, explained that the increase in value is indicative of the growing adaptation to the global ‘new normal’ after the economic disruption occasioned by the restrictions imposed to check the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.
He noted that foreign direct investment (FDI) inflow shrunk by as much as 30 per cent in 2020
Offor added that the increase also indicates the growing confidence of investors in the efforts to improve the national investment landscape.
“In 2022, it is expected that there would be some marginal upward flow in global FDI as long as the world sustains the rate of adaptation to the ‘new normal’, governments further relax the restrictions and allow a freer cross border movement while enforcing social distancing and intensifying campaigns for vaccination coverage as well as improving therapies to bring local transmission of COVID-19 to tolerable levels across the world,” he said.
While giving a breakdown of the total investment pledges, Offor said the top five states, by value of investments, are Lagos State ($8.7 billion), Bayelsa State ($3.6 billion), Delta State ($2.9 billion), Akwa Ibom State ($2 billion), and Adamawa State ($1 billion).
He further disclosed that the manufacturing sector had the highest number of projects (20) as well as the highest value, at $10.5 billion which represents 45 per cent.
This is followed by construction (16 per cent), electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply (13 per cent), information and communication technology (12 per cent), and mining and quarrying (9 per cent).
The Executive Secretary however expressed concern that the perception of Nigeria’s investment environment remained negative despite the “giant strides” that have been made by the Nigerian government in addressing the many challenges associated with doing business in the country.
“In recent months, several publications have been released that assessed the readiness of the countries on the continent to attract and retain investments. A few of these publications have been uncomplimentary towards Nigeria despite the giant strides that have been made,” he said.
While noting that the competition for capital has become more intense, amidst a drop in global volume, the Executive Secretary noted that the work for NIPC in the next five years has been appropriately defined by the National Development Plan 2021 – 2022 (NDP) which has projected a capital requirement of N348.7 trillion with 86 per cent (N298.3 trillion) expected to be provided by the private sector.
“Mobilisation of this capital has become the focus of the Commission. It is in this respect that the Commission has begun the process of validating the records of the investment announcements. We expect the report from this exercise to give us a further understanding of investors’ readiness to invest in Nigeria,” Offor said.
Harrison Edeh is a journalist with the International Centre for Investigative Reporting, always determined to drive advocacy for good governance through holding public officials and businesses accountable.