BREAKING NEWS: Tinubu okays Infrastructure Fund to fast track project development

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okays Infrastructure Fund to fast track project development

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Worried by infrastructural deficits in the country, has approved the Renewed Hope Infrastructure Development Fund.

The Fund, which is a replica of the Metropolitan Area Transport Authority, is meant to facilitate effective infrastructure development across the areas of agriculture, transportation, ports, aviation, energy, healthcare, and education in .

According to the proponents, the Fund will invest in critical national projects that will, among other things, promote growth, enhance local value-addition, create employment opportunities and stimulate technological innovation and exports.

Briefing State correspondents on Monday in , the Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Zacch Adedeji and the Minister of Solid Mineral Development, Dele Alake, explained that the objectives of the Fund are to establish an innovative infrastructure investment vehicle to attract and consolidate capital, serving as a dynamic for economic advancement.

They explained that it is also meant to execute strategic and meticulously chosen national infrastructure projects across several key sectors, including road, rail, agriculture (irrigation, storage, logistics & cold chain), ports, and aviation, among others.

It is equally intended to efficiently utilize and aggregate accessible low-interest loans such as concessionary loans and Eurobonds, supplemented by the procurement of other favourable financing options, in addition to budgetary allocations.

It is also expected to guarantee that Nigeria secures the most advantageous arrangements for financing, construction, and subsequently, operation and maintenance of the identified projects, ensuring optimal long-term outcomes for the nation.

They noted that the Fund will identify appropriate approaches in its investment strategy, such as direct project financing through budgetary allocations and SPVs; co-financing (public-private partnerships) with key institutions, multilateral development institutions, as well as equity investments.

On agricultural infrastructure and security, Alake explained that the emphasis is on the development of robust agricultural infrastructure networks. This encompasses the establishment of national food storage facilities, integrated irrigation systems, ranching for animal husbandry, and the enhancement of agricultural logistics and distribution.

On ports revitalization, the strategic thrust revolves around the rejuvenation of port facilities and associated infrastructure to streamline operations and enhance the ease of doing .

By modernizing port facilities and implementing advanced monitoring systems, the goal is to optimize efficiency, attract investments, and bolster Nigeria's position as a regional trade hub.

On aviation enhancement, the focus is on the revitalization and modernization of major airports nationwide.

Through targeted investments and infrastructure upgrades, major airports will undergo comprehensive refurbishment, including improvement in terminal facilities, runway expansions, and the implementation of cutting-edge technologies to enhance safety and operational efficiency.

On road infrastructure, some of the strategic projects to receive attention include the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Road, the Sokoto-Badagry Road, among other key road projects across the nation.

This is to enhance connectivity, facilitate transport efficiency, and stimulate economic growth across regions.

On rail infrastructure, Lagos-Kano and Eastern rail lines are among the projects to be prioritized by the Fund. The aim is to ensure the modernization of transportation networks, fostering interconnectivity between key urban centres, and facilitating the movement of goods and people with greater speed and reliability.

Tinubu has also approved that the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) which will be absorbed into the new Renewed Hope Infrastructure Development Fund (RHIDF), which will successfully eliminate identified bureaucratic inefficiencies, enhance domestic and external counterpart funding opportunities, and expedite project delivery timelines for the benefit of the people.

As the major infrastructural enabler of his global push for foreign direct investment across sectors, the President has further directed that the projects funded under the Renewed Hope Infrastructure Development Fund (RHIDF) reflect an equitable national spread, such that every Nigerian is impacted by the initiatives of his administration in the most qualitative fashion possible.

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