‘I don’t think the country can afford a policy that is anti-foreign investment’

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GBENGA OLANIYAN, the CEO of Estate Links, led a Nigeria trade delegation that was in The Gambia recently to explore investment opportunities in the West African country. In this interview with CHUKA UROKO in Banjul, the Gambian capital, Olaniyan explains why Nigerian investors should invest in the country’s economy, especially in real estate where the rental market is very active and the yield is way ahead of what obtains in Nigeria. He also speaks on other relevant issues. Excerpts:

Why do you encourage Nigerian investors to invest in The Gambia given the country’s small market and undeveloped economy?

 There are two things that informed this decision. I see a lot of people who look at coming to invest in Gambia as a one-way thing. I have been coming to this country since 2008 and I have actually invested in its economy. What I am thinking of is that if we must do direct foreign investment, let us as much as  possible, keep it within Africa. Gambia provides a mid point where you have a vibrant tourism industry and tourists come around and rent properties.

So far, the investment I have been involved in here has done excellently well and that is real estate. Some members of this team are already looking at other opportunities. Someone is already looking at opportunities in manufacturing. Actually, there are some opportunities one could be looking at here.

But at the same time, in a small country like this that works, where electricity is almost uninterrupted, so many things are right. There are so many things we can learn from here and take back home. For me as a regular visitor to this place, the small bungalows we saw at the Dalaba Estate struck me as something one could invest … Read More...

Ogun moves to partner FMBN, NHF for provision of mass, low-cost housing

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As part of iconic celebration of 100 days in office of Dapo Abiodun as Governor of Ogun state scheduled for September this year, the Ogun state government is putting up arrangement to construct low-cost housing for public and civil servants as well as interested residents in all the three senatorial districts of then state.
Consequently, the State government is signing an agreement with the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) and National Housing Fund (NHF), seeking a flexible finance in form of mortgage for easy and unhindered access to own a house.
Speaking during a familiarization tour of the State Ministry of Housing, the newly appointed Special Adviser to Governor on Housing, Jamiu Akande Omoniyi, said that the new government had identified housing as essential element in human’s needs as the administration will make ground breaking for mass housing in the three senatorial districts of the state to mark 100 days in office.
Omoniyi noted that the proposed mass and low cost housing meant to be built for civil and public servants as well as residents would not only engage jobless hands in the state but would also boost the state’s economy through remittances of taxes and fees hitherto being paid to  neighbouring states back to Ogun state’s coffers.
He said, “His Excellency, Prince Dapo Abiodun has plan for mass housing for the citizens, we are planning to develop it within the three senatorial districts of the State, I can assure you that”.
The Special Adviser on Housing stated that government would partner private developers to attract investment towards housing sector, adding that it also tends to collaborate with stakeholders such as the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FBMN) and National Housing Fund (NHF) in order to get the job done and deliver affordable housing

NMRC grows FY gross earning 15% in 2018 to N7.086bn

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The Nigerian Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC) has grown its full year gross earning for the year ending 2018 by 15 percent to N7.086 billion, up from N6.160 billion n 2017.
The chairman of the company,  Charles Adeyemi Candide-Johnson, who disclosed this at the company’s 3rd Annual  General Meeting (AGM)  in Lagos on Wednesday, also revealed that the company’s profit before tax decreased marginally by 0.5percent from N1.945billlion in 2017 to N1.935 billion in 2018

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Firm partners UK property developer on providing brand homes

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Windsor Real Estate,a leading property investment company, is partnering with the UK’s number one property developer, Berkeley Group plc for the launch of their latest North London development – Clarendon, N8, at events across Lagos and Abuja this week.

The Group Managing Director ofWindsorReal Estate Richard Vedelago, confirmed the development in a statement noting that the launch of the project further demonstrates Berkeley’s commitment to creating not just brand new homes but establishing new communities’ of high-quality and stylish design into the London Landscape.

“We are delighted to have been selected by St. William to bring forward this opportunity, which is in its first phase and therefore forecasts are strong for early capital growth and good rental yields. Windsor’s mantra is to continuously offer the very best projects to our Nigerian clients and giving them amazing upside in the long run” he said.

Vedelago said once complete, the project, whose first phase is called Hornsey Park Place, will deliver over 1,700 one, two and three-bedroom homes, incorporating a new 5 acre public park, together with a series of landscaped spaces and courtyards.

Clarendon offers residents the opportunity to invest in an up and coming area of London, sitting between Hornsey, Wood Green and the expansive Alexandra Palace. The area is undergoing massive regeneration, which will further strengthen the scheme’s desirability.

The scheme will also introduce over 100,000 sq ft of commercial space, creating a new vibrant London destination.




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Gambia woos Nigerian investors, offers tax-free incentives, unfettered access to land

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The government of The Gambia, one of Nigeria’s English speaking West African neighbours, has told visiting Nigerian investors that the country is free, good and open to business.
The country assured the investors of a number of incentives including free tax and VAT operations, unfettered access to land and 100 percent profit repatriation.

Isatou Touray, the vice president of the country, at a dinner to receive the Nigerian investors in Banjul, the Gambian capital, on Saturday, noted that in rebuilding the country after 22 years of dictatorship, they needed private capital to be injected into their economy.

Touray said the country looked up particularly to Nigeria as big brother in Africa and it’s investors to help in their economic block building efforts by investing in the country.

The vice president who represented the president, Adams Boro, whose election in January 2016 ended the many years of dictatorship in the country, pointed out that the country needed investment in critical sectors of its economy including agriculture, tourism, real estate, manufacturing, energy etc.

Earlier, Seedy Bittayean, an official of the the Gambian Import and Export Promotion Agency (GIEPA) had explained to BusinessDay in an interview that the country needed investors
In order to jumpstart their economy and also to reduce their exposure to imported items including foodstuff which, in some cases, according to him, was as high as 90 percent.

Bittaye, whose agency overseas import and export activities and investment inflow into the country, noted that the country needed investors most in agriculture in order to tap into the opportunities the vast arable land in the country offered and create jobs.

He disclosed that efforts were being made to reform land tenure system in the country not only to put an end to land grabbing which was … Read More...