HOW TO STIMULATE NIGERIA'S GROWTH, BY OKONJO IWEALA
World Bank Managing Director, Dr. (Mrs) Ngozi Okonji-Iweala, has said Nigeria could compete favourably with developed and G-20 partners.
She explained that it was possible if adequate priority is accorded infrastructure as a cardinal part of the country's overall long term development strategy.
Dr. Okonjo-Iweala made the declaration at the weekend, in Asaba,Delta State, at the 2nd distinguished lecture series of the Sylvester Monye Foundation. The former finance minister posited that basic infrastructure, including power supply, good road network, transport systems, telecommunication and the aviation industry in the country, could be improved upon.
According to her, the provision of good infrastructure in the country can give rise to increase in the income of the people in the rural area as it would ease the transportation of their goods to the urban and commercial cities instead of them migrating to Urban areas.
She said Nigeria could compete with developed countries and her G-20 partners if there is improvement in governance, strengthening her institutions and building capacity to implement projects, clear and transparent governance systems as well as developing public institutions charged with prevention and minimising waste in the power sector.
The World bank boss argued that funds were not the key problem facing infrastructural development in the country, rather technical expertise, which, she said, was responsible for lack of growth in infrastructure .
Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala tasked Nigerians to emulate China and India whose growth investment in infrastructure had positively affected their highways, bridges, sub-ways, and airports, which are the mainstay of their economy.
While expressing happiness with some notable infrastructural developments in the country, especially in the telecommunication industry and establishment of the excess crude oil account; which she attributed to policy reforms in the last decade, she called on state governments in the country to desist from creating budget and financial credits at ridging borrowing guidelines.