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Lagos signs MoU with FMDQ, FSD Africa to facilitate Green Bond issuance

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CHIAMAKA MBONU

The Lagos State government on Tuesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with FMDQ Group, Financial Sector Deepening Africa (FSD) to raise ₦25billion bond for the state Green Bond Market Development Programme.

Speaking at the ceremony to kick off the commencement of the framework for managing the bond, the State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, noted that climate change was a gateway to new business opportunities and profitable investment opportunities in the state.

The Governor said: “I strongly believe that the Green Bond Programme will open the doors of deep sustainable funds for infrastructure and social development for Lagos State, being the biggest player in the sub-national capital markets, and therefore, open new doors overall for lots of others. As a State, we embrace the transparency and commitment that come with a Green Finance Framework.

“We believe it sends an important signal to investors in the market about who we are – a state that is fiscally responsible, prudent and disciplined. It is our intention to continue to validate this reality, as well as our commitment to building a greater, circular, climate-resilient and prosperous Lagos State which is unwavering”, he said.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of FMDQ Group, Bola Onadele-Koko, at the signing ceremony posited that the state being the centre of commercialization, needed capital to embark on key projects.

“The dynamism of Lagos State as a hub for commerce/financial market activities and the State’s incredible potential for catalysing broad-based sustainable development call for the need to unlock and attract capital to fund key projects in the State,” he said.

Speaking further, Onadele-Koko said the organization was proud to partner with the state to address climate and environmental challenges, adding that the job would stimulate economic growth and align the State Governor’s THEMES agenda with achieving the Sustainable Development Growth (SDG).

He said, “FMDQ Group is proud and honoured to be part of this momentous signing ceremony. This will stimulate economic growth, enhance job creation, and align the State’s THEMES (Traffic Management and Transportation, Health and Environment, Education and Technology, Entertainment and Tourism, as well as Security and Governance) Agenda towards transitioning Lagos State to a greener and more sustainable economy in line with the United Nations SDGs.

“This iconic MoU signing is timely and FMDQ Group, as the local partner to the NGBMDP and an agent of change, empowering markets for economic progress towards delivering prosperity is excited about this opportunity to support the developmental aspirations of Lagos State”.

The CEO of FSD Africa, Mr. Mark Napier, a representative of an Implementing Partner to the Programme, commented:  “FSD Africa is pleased to offer its support to Lagos State as it moves towards issuing its first green bond. This demonstrates excellent leadership by Lagos State, and we hope that other sub-national entities will consider following Lagos State on this journey”.

The United Kingdom’s Deputy High Commissioner in Lagos, Mr. Ben Llewellyn-Jones, stated that there was a pressing need to mitigate the impact of climate-related risk on the millions of Lagosians , and that the UK Government is committed to helping mobilise green financing  to support the Lagos State Government’s initiative.

“We are currently working with the State Government to build a pipeline of green infrastructure projects through our portfolio of programmes, including our Future Cities Nigeria Development Programme. We will continue to work with the Lagos State to strengthen its resilience ahead of COP26 and thereafter”, Llewellyn-Jones said.

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