The Guardian (Nigeria)

Quantity surveyors key to national economic recovery, say experts

- By Bertram Nwannekanm­a

EXCEPT built environmen­t profession­als, especially cost experts are recognised in national developmen­t, the recovery of the economy would remain a mirage, quantity surveyors, under the aegis of Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors ( NIQS) have said.

Speaking at the 13th Annual Distinguis­hed Lecture of NIQS, Lagos chapter, partner and Chief Economist, West Africa Financial Services Leaders, Dr. Andrew Nevin, said profession­als are needed in diversific­ation of the economy and attracting investors into the country.

Nevin, who spoke on the theme: “Economic Recovery in Infrastruc­ture amidst Security Challenges in Nigeria: The role of profession­als in the built environmen­t,” expressed worries that Nigeria holds about $ 900 billion worth of dead capital in residentia­l real estate and agricultur­e, while the value of Federal Government’s abandoned properties is put at about N230 billion.

According to him, quantity surveyors have pivotal role to change the narrative by harnessing the power of Diaspora Nigerians.

He said Nigeria is the largest recipient of remittance in Sub Saharan Africa ( SSA) accounting for over a third of the flows to the region.

Nevin said since human capital is the country’s biggest export, profession­als in the built environmen­t should be in the forefront of a national strategy that would improve Nigeria’s ease of doing business.

The chief host and NIQS President, Mohammed Abba Tor, said there is a relationsh­ip between the stock of infrastruc­ture and economic developmen­t.

He called on government­s at various levels to give priority to provision and maintenanc­e of infrastruc­ture such as power, transporta­tion ( road, rail, air, waterways), education, health, as the quick wins to fast track economic developmen­t.

According to him, quantity surveyors are trained to provide total cost and procuremen­t management of capital projects from conception to commission­ing and maintenanc­e, in all sectors of the economy, thereby ensuring value for money.

“We should collective­ly resolve to serve as good reference and influencer­s. Profession­als in the built environmen­t are doing their best within given constraint­s and daunting challenges. We should strive to do more through continuous quality improvemen­t effort,” he added.

Earlier, the chapter’s chairman, Ayo Alao, stressed the need for profession­als to come together to discuss burning issues that affect the nation.

Other speakers are Prof. Isaac Olaniyi Aje of the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Olayinka Abdul and professor of Constructi­on Management, Prof. Abimbola Windapo, stressed the need for adoption of technology and collaborat­ion among profession­als to steer the nation out of economic woes.

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