Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday received the British Prime Minister, Theresa May in Lagos, affirming that the State remains a choice destination for investors from the United Kingdom.
The British Prime Minister, who arrived the Presidential Wing of the International Airport at about 4:30pm, was received by the Governor, the Deputy Governor, Dr. Mrs. Oluranti Adebule, the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Tunji Bello and the Special Adviser, Overseas Affairs and Investment, Professor Ademola Abass.
The Governor said he was delighted to welcome the British Prime Minister to Lagos, noting that the relationship between Britain and Nigeria dated back to the nineteenth century.
He said that much of Nigerian education, cultural and political systems was influenced by Britain and that there are more Nigerians living in the UK than elsewhere in the world outside Nigeria.
Governor Ambode emphasised that Lagos remained a place of choice for British investors especially given that stability in the government, the site of Lagos economy and population, the particular focus of his administration on the rule of law and justice sector reform.
All of these, the Governor said, have not only enhanced the ease of doing business in Lagos but also ensured a greater protection of people and investment in the State.
He also said that it would be of particular importance to Lagos State if British investors could explore the various opportunities that exist in the State in the areas of energy, technology, export finance, infrastructure and the creative industry.
The Governor expressed optimism in the strengthening of the relationship between Britain and Lagos and avowed that his administration would do whatever it takes to achieve that goal.
In her response, the British Prime Minister noted that she was happy to be in Lagos and underscored the commercial importance of Lagos in Nigeria.
She pointed out the important role that a stable government in Lagos plays in giving extra confidence of investors in the State.
The Head of the British Government also disclosed the availability of export credit finance to the tune of 750 million pound sterling as well as a considerable development finance, which Lagos State could look towards.
She spoke about the role that British could play in the development of the technology industry in Lagos given the particular capability of the UK in that area.
In that regard, the PM disclosed that she brought as part of her delegation, an expert in Fintech to explore the opportunity in this area that Lagos could benefit from.
The British Prime Minister also noted the special strength of the London City as a financial hub that could be of considerable importance for Lagos State, just as she emphasized sustainability and growth in Britain/Lagos relationship.
Finally, she expressed the desire of the British government to assist Lagos in the development of her creative industry and alluded to the fact that the jacket she was wearing when she met with the Governor was actually made in Nigeria.