The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has appealed to the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) to help West Africa build a coastal highway from Lagos to Dakar, capital of Senegal.
Speaking at the G24 ministers and governors meeting in Washington DC, Adeosun said regional infrastructure development is a potential growth driver.
“We believe that part of the solution must be regional, multi-country initiatives on infrastructure development. Though complex and often not easy to undertake, there are also successful cases of such projects,” she said.
“For instance, a coastal super highway from Lagos to Dakar in West Africa would cut across 11 economic territories. Another Trans-Sahel highway from north-west Nigeria to Mauritania would provide access and boost economic activities of land-lock countries like Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali.”
Adeosun also told both international organisations to improve the provision of and access to renewable energy in order to deliver development results and meet global climate goals.
“We have a major energy infrastructure gap to meet the needs of industrialisation. Providing access to energy to all parts of Nigeria, both urban and rural, is a priority.
“If we succeed, we estimate that this could unleash the development potentials of two-third of our population of 180 million.”
She said the generation of renewable energy is a financially attractive option for reaching rural population, adding that there is a need for business models from other countries to serve as a template in the provision of affordable energy.
In a communiqué released at the end of its meeting, G24 ministers and governors urged the World Bank Group and the IMF to continue strengthening their assistance in improving domestic resource mobilisation.