AN ADDRESS DELIVERED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, MR. AKINWUNMI AMBODE, GOVERNOR OF LAGOS STATE AT THE CLOSING CEREMONY OF THE 29TH LAGOS INTERNATIONAL TRADE FAIR HELD AT THE TAFAWA BALEWA SQUARE (TBS), LAGOS ON SUNDAY, 15TH NOVEMBER, 2015.
Today marks the end of 10 days of showcasing the potentials of the various sectors of our economy. This Fair has brought together the business community and the rest of the population to network, interact and exchange business ideas.
The Lagos Trade Fair has become an important business exhibition in Sub Saharan Africa because Lagos is the land of opportunities; a place that is home to all tribes, races and creeds.
The theme of this year’s Fair“Enhancing Value Addition in the Non-Oil Economy” is quite instructive as it underscores the need to pay more attentionto the non-oil sectorin response to the challengess of dwindling revenue from oil.
It is also a wakeup call for us as a nation to look inward for alternative and sustainable sources of revenue to finance people oriented programmes and projects.
Lagos State has been in the forefront of generating non-oil revenues, accounting for over Sixty-Five Per Cent (65%) of the nation’s non-oil Gross Domestic Product and over Sixty Per Cent (60%) of the country’s value added manufacturing.
I have no doubt that this year’s fair has been rewarding and also achieved its set objectives. Let us consolidate on the gains recorded by following up on the relationships established for mutually beneficial business and investments.
I am hopeful that by the time we converge again next year, we will have better gains to share. The gains of current efforts at all levels would have begun to unfold in improved infrastructure, more efficient business support services, improved public transport system and a more secured and business friendly environment.
Although the challenges are daunting, the future is bright. We must remain hopeful and support the efforts of the present administration of President MuhammaduBuhariwhich has, so far, demonstrated genuine commitment towards transforming current challenges to opportunities for sustainable economic growth.
I congratulate the Board and Management of the Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry for successfully organizing this 29th Lagos International Trade Fair, most especially the President, AlhajiRemi Bello. The decision to host this year’s Fair in three different locations simultaneously is commendable as it has given more organizations the opportunity to participate and contribute to the overall success.
I also commend all exhibitors, sponsors and visitors that have come from far and near to this year’s Trade Fair. The growing interest in this Fair, especially from foreign countries, attests to thestatus of our State as a land of opportunities and choice destination for investments.
Let me end this address by stating that Lagos is open for business. Our newly-established office of Overseas Affairs and Investment remains a one-stop shop that all interested investors can connect to. In conjunction with the Ministry of Commerce and Industries; the government is more than ever prepared to meet all your business needs.
It is on this note that I declare the 29th Lagos International Trade Fair closed.
Thank you and God bless you all.
Itesiwaju Ilu Eko, lo je wa l’ogun!!!
Governor of Lagos State,
15th November, 2015