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  • Writer's pictureAbdulgafar Asimi

Lekki Free Trade Zone- an opportunity for the investors

Free trade is a policy followed by some international markets in which countries’ governments do not restrict imports from, or exports to, other countries.

Free-trade zone (FTZ) is a specific class of special economic zone.They are a geographic area where goods may be landed, handled, manufactured or reconfigured, and reexported without the intervention of the customs authorities. Only when the goods are moved to consumers within the country in which the zone is located do they become subject to the prevailing customs duties.

Free trade zones are organized around major seaports, international airports, and national frontiers—areas with many geographic advantages for trade.It is a region where a group of countries has agreed to reduce or eliminate trade barriers.

The Lekki Free Zone is an ambitious project with the potential to transform Nigeria’s economy, but it is still very much in development. The key focus now is to make the zone viable for business and more importantly, to set up an unprecedented suite of infrastructure that will make any logistics veteran giddy.
Potentially, Lekki’s deep-sea port will be one of the most advanced in the world, and the area’s sheer size will provide for warehouses storing millions and millions of trade wares. This is all in addition to a nearby refinery, which will ensure that the zone also becomes a hub for energy exports. All this is part of a national programme. The Nigerian Enterprises Promotional Agency has set out to create a slew of free trade zones all over the country, in the hopes that Nigeria can repeat China’s story, and become the leading economy of its region. The Chinese model – which first came into force in 1988 – saw the creation of several special economic zones that employed more flexible economic policies and government measures, in order to foster growth and foreign direct investment within those areas
Lekki Deap Sea

The hope is that Lekki will become a nerve centre for distribution for the Lagos area and nearby sub-regions. The current international airport in Lagos is extremely congested, and for many travellers, it’s common knowledge that the trip to and from the city can easily take three hours on muddy, chaotic roads. By establishing an airport in Lekki, the current hassle related to Lagos will be eliminated and by firstly focusing on the transport of cargo, Lekki will effectively become a major manufacturing and development zone.

“Globally, FTZs are known to have one of the largest job creation capacities. Record has shown that for every job created in FTZs, two additional jobs are created through a multiplier process.” Speaking during the event, Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State commended Aganga for his commitment to fast-tracking the completion of the LFTZ. He said, “What we are seeing here today is the first tentative test for the implementation of the plan for the Lekki Free Trade Zone.

The project will out-live many of us ad will be a good legacy that our children will be proud of and thankful to those who visualised the project. “The partnership we have with the Federal Government and the enthusiasm the Minister of Trade and Investment has shown towards the project is a very strong signal of our commitment to taking advantage of the investment opportunities in the state now.” He, however, said that there was a need for a direct gas pipe line into the zone for the generation of power, noting that this was a major requirement for the sustainability of the zone

“Read more at Vanguad News

Free trade policies generally promote the following features:

  1. Trade of goods without taxes (including tariffs) or other trade barriers (e.g., quotas on imports or subsidies for producers)

  2. Trade in services without taxes or other trade barriers

  3. The absence of “trade-distorting” policies (such as taxes, subsidies,regulations, or laws) that give some firms, households, or factors of production an advantage over others

  4. Unregulated access to markets

  5. Unregulated access to market information

  6. Inability of firms to distort markets through government imposed monopoly or oligopoly power

Trade agreements which encourage free trade.If you find this helpful, kindly like and share

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