The Nigerian government needs N3 trillion annually to fix the infrastructural deficit across the country, the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors has said.
According to a communiqué signed by the association’s president, Mercy Iyortyer, the group noted that the demand for construction projects is high while the capital needed to fund the projects is dwindling, due to the fall in oil prices among other factors.
The communique, issued at the end of a two- day workshop on Finance and Development of capital projects in Lagos, also noted that the ability of the country to deal with this challenge would affect its future economic trajectory.
The group noted that it was important for the government to focus on Project Finance Options as a way to develop Nigeria’s infrastructure projects.
The communique said the traditional approach where governments at all levels finance the construction of infrastructure projects from fiscal budgets, with little or no support from the private sector, was unsustainable.
“This approach of project financing is unsustainable given the present economic pressures (i.e. falling oil prices, high exchange rate, double digit inflation rate, unstable foreign exchange rate, low budget performance and liquidity constraints) on the fiscal budget,” the communique said.
The association argued further that there was urgent need for professionals to consider emerging solutions to these challenges and to benchmark other countries, such as China and Dubai, who have had success stories in this area.
With the understanding of the measurement of cost and value among others, quantity surveyors would lead the way in the quest to ensure private sector financing of capital projects, the association said.
Similarly, it explained that there was need for the private sector to become increasingly involved in the creation of financing solutions to develop Nigeria’s frail infrastructure.