Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Lagos State governor, has reiterated his administration’s commitment to collaborate with Netherlands on health, education, technology, trade, tourism and infrastructure.
Sanwo-Olu stated this while playing host to the team led by Netherlands Minister for Foreign Trade, Development and Cooperation, Mrs Sigrid Kaag, who paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos.
According to him, the state had investment opportunities, adding that the state had been home to all, with friendly environment for foreign investors.
The Governor thanked the team for the visit, explaining that Netherlands and Lagos share certain similar features such as their locations below the sea level and technology, which he said, would assist in the bilateral arrangements to be discussed.
He explained the reclamation effort at Eko Atlantic City, saying, “You know, there is a new development being done at Eko Atlantic City. That is a city that is risen on top of water. It is actually an engineering that we are really proud of.
“With technology, you need to sand fill a lot of the place there. It went 12 meters down and has a height of about nine meters up and that is twice the size of Victoria Island. We poured 10 million cubic of sand to stabilise. It’s actually an engineering that we are really proud of.”
The governor also lauded the efforts of Netherland in skill acquisition and poverty reduction programmes, which had made Lagos State foster economic relation with the country.
Sanwo-Olu said: “On education, Netherland is very good. They develop skills a lot, which reduces poverty, hence our aim of partnering with you is to ensure that poverty is reduced by 2030. That is our goal.”
He lauded the current collaboration with the Dutch government in various areas, including the new Lagos State Health Insurance Scheme, saying a lot had been going on to boost the health sector as his administration was poised to give people quality access to health.
“We have just launched early in the year our health insurance scheme which is taking-off well. We also realised that we must tackle all issues of health and its quality delivery at early stages,” Sanwo-Olu stated.
On water transportation, Sanwo-Olu noted the state had been working hard to take enough space in the waters for dredging to ensure safety when full blown aquatic traffic begins.
According to him, “We are doing a lot of reclamation to safeguard water safety, water transportation. I think these are some of the things we are dealing with to upscale our transport system.
“What I am trying to present is total transportation in all, but for available resources. Water transportation is for us and, of course, we need to complete our rail projects too so that we can have easy movement of our people from one part of the city to the other.”
Earlier, Mrs Kaag congratulated the governor on his electoral victory, even as she commended his work ethics since assumption of office.
According to Kaag, “From what I have heard so far, you are tremendous in your attitude, hence what the people who elected you saw and chose you as the governor of the fifth largest economy in African continent is not in doubt.”
She expressed willingness to collaborate with the current Lagos administration to achieve the desired result in areas, including maritime, health, education and technology adding that Lagos and indeed Nigeria has the potential to shine and lead by example.