THE Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry ( LCCI) has said that unintended consequences of rapid population growth, urbanisation, relentless demands for infrastructure, increasing demand for quality education services and healthcare pose risk to the economic potential of the heart of Africa’s centre of commerce – Lagos Island.
The LCCI President, Asiwaju Michael Olawale-Cole, stated this on Wednesday during his opening remarks at the Lagos Island economic summit webinar.
Olawale-Cole noted that Lagos Island was pivotal to trade and commerce in Nigeria as a huge volume of commercial and financial business was carried out daily in the central business district situated on the Island.
He, however, expressed concern that the rapid urbanisation of the state with its attendant demands might threaten the economic growth of Lagos Island due to its strategic economic relevance to the state.
He said, “The extensive and daily money-making activities have, over time, accelerated the transition of the Island from a mere trade point to a commercial nerve centre. This underscores its immense potential along with the key structural components of the Nigerian economy, especially in distributive trade, real estate, transportation, logistics, tourism, and hospitality sectors.
“However, as the economic assets of the metropolitan mega-city increase by leaps and bounds, unintended consequences of rapid population growth, urbanization, relentless demands for infrastructure, increasing demand for quality education services, and healthcare are common realities.
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As it is, the economic growth of Lagos Island is outpaced by the geometric increase in the population size.”
He further called for concerted efforts towards developing a comprehensive blueprint for harnessing opportunities for the development of the Island to unlock untapped economic potential along with its areas of comparative advantage.