Okowanomics Fact Sheet No. 9, October-B 2022
DELTA STATE JOB AND WEALTH CREATION BUREAU [DSJWCB] is pleased to publish the latest [new] edition of the twice-a-month Okowanomics Fact Sheet Series.
The purpose of this evidence-based serial publication is to continually inform and influence key stakeholders at the state and national levels regarding Governor Okowa’s outstanding governance achievements and exemplary leadership of Delta State.
This 9th edition is titled “A Better Business Environment is Now in Place – Part 2”
Okowanomics Fact Sheets provide authoritative up-to-date facts and figures that can be cited and publicised, accordingly.
Please, read, use and share the Okowanomics Fact Sheet No. 9, October-B 2022, attached as follows.
BETTER BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT IS NOW IN PLACE (PART 2)
Okowanomics Fact Sheet No. 9, October-B 2022
Okowanomics Fact Sheet Series is a semi-monthly [twice-a-month] bulletin of evidence-based “Fact Sheets” showing Governor Okowa’s spectacular achievements in the social, infrastructural and economic development of Delta State. The Fact Sheet Series is a “book of chronicles” of Governor Okowa’s legacies and footprints in the geopolitical entity of Delta State. It is a tracker dashboard that mirrors real-time the unique developmental strides in Delta State under the leadership of Governor Okowa.
The Series is developed and published by Delta State Job & Wealth Creation Bureau, using verified information and data for each series, from the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
This Okowanomics Fact Sheet No. 9 focuses on additional evidence of Governor Okowa’s legacy of a better business and investment environment, as a complement to the earlier Okowanomics Fact Sheet No. 5.
2.0 THE CONCEPT OF OKOWANOMICS
Okowanonics is the brand identity representing the gamut of Governor Okowa’s political ingenuity, developmental philosophy and governance ideology defined by his people-centred approach, economic prudence and social intelligence.
Underlying Okowanomics is Governor Okowa’s exceptional assortment of personality and character virtues notably critical thinking, clear foresight, sound planning, clever coordination, effective execution, humility, self-discipline, people skills and executive intelligence. These sterling qualities and attributes are manifest in the excellent leadership and exemplary governance of Delta State from 29th of May 2015 to date.
3.0 FACTORS AND CONDITIONS THAT HAVE CREATED A BETTER BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
The economic growth and sustainable prosperity of any society directly correlate with the state of business and investment environment for private enterprise. This is because private sector is the society’s economic engine and pivot of job and wealth creation. The ingredients of business environment, such as, cost of doing business, transparency and efficiency of regulatory institutions, efficient transportation, communication and power infrastructure and good quality labour, have definitive impact on the functioning, performance and growth of the private sector.
With this understanding in mind, His Excellency, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor of Delta State, on assumption of office on the 29th of May 2015, prioritized the attainment of a better business environment.
Specifically, some of the factors and conditions that have brought about better business environment are identified as follows:
Peace building, conflict prevention and resolution and ensuring security. The proactive policy action in establishing the Advisory and Peace building Council in August 2015 and Advocacy Committee Against Vandalism of Oil and Gas facilities in May 2016 has provided mechanisms and channels for continual constructive engagement with conflict-prone communities in the state. Also, the proper handling of the ethnic diversity of the state through inclusive, fair and equitable political and economic management has created an atmosphere of trust, mutual respect and sense of belonging to diverse ethnic groups of the state.
Facilitating private investors’ access to agricultural land. The establishment of Agricultural Land Data Bank Initiative in July 2016 to develop a data repository on available agricultural lands and facilitate access of private agro-investors to agricultural lands by working with the local communities. By this facility, the state government has given business confidence to private agro-investors by ensuring that they have smooth, dispute-free, community-friendly access to and possession of cultivable lands.
Promoting public-private partnership investments and projects. The establishment of Delta State Investment Development Agency in August 2017, with dedicated responsibility for facilitating and promoting private sector investments and fostering public private partnerships for economic growth. The environment for private sector project execution has also been boosted by the enactment of the Delta State Public and Private Property Protection Law in August 2018.
Massive state-wide road construction and rehabilitation. Cognizant of the crucial importance of roads in ensuring ease of doing business, His Excellency, the Governor, has from 2015 to date, achieved road construction and rehabilitation totaling 1,932.14 km and drains totaling 1,035.95 km. Reinforced by the establishment of Delta State Traffic Management Authority in April 2016, the unparalleled development of roads has eased intra-state and intra-city transportation for social and business activities.
Sustainable urban renewal through the establishment of urban development agencies. The legal creation, establishment and functioning of Delta State Capital Territory Development Agency [July 2015] and Warri/Uvwie and Environs Area Development Agency [July 2019] is instrumental to the recorded urban renewal strides in terms of physical development, road network, sanitation, market facilities and beautification.
4.0 EVIDENCE OF THE BETTER BUSINESS
ENVIRONMENT IN DELTA STATE
One noteworthy sign of improved business environment is the historic changing structure of the economy towards non-oil sector, driven by the accelerating growth of the services sector including hospitality, real estate, transportation, wholesale and retail commerce, personal services [microenterprises], etc.
Non-oil sector share of GDP increased from 41.9% in 2013 to 52.50% in 2020, signaling diversification of the state’s economy. Tied to this trend is the fact that the services sector increased from 18.77% of 2013 GDP to 29.73% of 2020 GDP, just as agriculture share of GDP increased from 9.53% of 2013 GDP to 13.22% of 2020 GDP.
The better business environment is reflected also by the fact that the services sub-sectors are the highest performing in terms of recent accelerated growth rates from 2019 to date, as follows: accommodation and food services 59.69%, arts, recreation and entertainment 17.10%, trade 16.81%, construction 12.33% and transportation and storage 11.97%.
The award of hosting rights for and successful hosting of national and international sports competitions in the state is a clear testament of a conducive business and social environment.
Delta Sate, specifically the capital, Asaba, successfully hosted the 2018 African Athletics Championships [AAC] from 1st to 5th of August 2018, AITEO Cup Final between Enugu Rangers and Kano Pillars on 24th October 2018, international friendly football match between Super Eagles of Nigeria and Uganda Cranes on 20th of November 2018, AFCON Qualifier between Super Eagles and Seychelles on 22nd March 2019 and international friendly football match between Super Eagles of Nigeria and Pharaohs of Egypt on 26th of March 2019.
Also, Asaba will host the epic 2022 National Sports Festival [NSF] in November 2022.
Delta State today occupies the first position in oil production in the country, due to the prevailing peace and security in the oil-producing communities.
The better business environment in Delta State is confirmed by independent national and international assessments. For instance, evidence from World Bank’s Nigerian Subnational Ease of Doing Business Survey shows that Delta State improved on ease of doing business from the score of 51.73 in 2014 to 54.97 in 2018. The survey also confirmed that Delta State has implemented regulatory reform regarding “registering property” during the reference period. Recently also, the African Heritage Institution’s Business Environment and Competitiveness Across Nigerian States [BECANS] in 2020, ranked Delta State No. 1 among the 36 Nigerian states regarding the benchmark “Regulatory Services” which comprises five indicators “Collection of Taxes and Levies”, “Land Registration”, “Commercial Dispute Resolution” “Business Registration” and “Fiscal Management and Public Procurement”.
His Excellency, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor of Delta State, has, by his excellent leadership, illustrated the significant positive effect of a conducive business environment on the growth of the private sector and overall economic performance. The central lesson of Delta State success story is that achieving a better business and investment environment entails a multidimensional policy approach covering social, infrastructural, regulatory and public service improvements. This shining example of good governance should be replicated by other states and at the national level.