Ogun State Government has challenged critical revenue generating agencies to intensify efforts at improving its revenue profile, considering the opportunities and benefits accruable in the State, being the fifth largest economy in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The Chief Economic Adviser and Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Dapo Okubadejo threw the challenge at a strategic meeting on Revenue Profile Target and Achievements, organised for stakeholders across the revenue generating Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), at the Conference Room of the State Ministry of Budget & Planning, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.
Okubadejo stated that the meeting was initiated to review revenue generation issues and strategise on how to block leakages, towards providing more prosperity for the State and engender infrastructure that would enhance the Ease of Doing business.
‘We need to take a look at where we are coming from, and how to strategise at ensuring that the revenue profile we aim to achieve, has the buy-in of everyone here and generate a lot of ideas on how to block leakages, towards providing more prosperity for the State and engender infrastructure that would enhance the Ease of Doing business”, he said.
The Commissioner emphasised that the State’s proximity to Lagos and large industrial profile had not translated into a commensurate revenue profile, adding that it was imperative to leverage on technology to block revenue leakages and carry out enforcement collectively rather than approaching it with a duplicated effort.
On his part, Commissioner for Budget & Planning, Mr. Olaoluwa Olabimtan noted that the focus of the session, was to come up with a Medium Term Revenue Strategy that would complement the Medium Term Expenditure Framework, which was introduced last year to avoid policy somersault.
Olabimtan said the move would help the State progress in growing revenue and plug the leakages, adding that developing an expenditure framework without any concrete effort at achieving a corresponding revenue strategy, would hamper on the performance of the State for the year under review.
He informed that the revenue strategy would ultimately transformed into a revenue policy document for the State, with four pillars to be focused on which include; proper revenue goal and policy, administrative, institutional and process reform, coordinated capacity development and political support.
‘’Though, looking at the nation’s revenue statistics, Ogun State seems to be at the top, but looking critically at it, it shows there may still be some gaps, especially tax to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio. In terms of the core asset of the State, you will realise we are not there yet, and this is a call to all of us to do more”, he said.
Odunayo Ogunleye & Kofoworola Idowu,
Ministry of Budget and Planning