Rendeavour, the biggest new city builder in Africa, will be investing over $250 million worth of infrastructure in Alaro City, the new mixed-income city being built at the Lekki Free Zone (LFZ), Lagos state.
Tim Beighton, the head of marketing and communications, Rendeavour, who disclosed this at a media parley in Lagos on Wednesday, said appetite for Alaro City, has remained strong as investors and prospective homeowners continued to turn to a development that has been widely hailed as the next phase of Lagos.
Beighton said over $250 million worth of infrastructure will be invested in Alaro city and an additional $1.5 billion will be invested in building structures. “Launched in January, Alaro City is planned as a 2,000-hectare integrated mixed-use, city-scale development with industrial and logistics locations, complemented by offices, homes, schools, healthcare facilities, hotels, entertainment and 150 hectares of parks and open spaces. The project, more than twice the size of Victoria Island, is a joint venture between the Lagos State Government and Rendeavour.
“The phase one of its residential plots has already been sold out; and the phase two sales are ongoing. Businesses are also taking advantage of the mixed-use characteristics of the new city going by the several facilities under construction at the site. More than 10 businesses, spanning across national and multinational firms, are currently investing in the city,” he added.
Odunayo Ojo, the CEO of Alaro City, said the new city, located in the North West Quadrant of the LFZ, lies in the growth path of Lagos and aims to serve as a model for what a modern mixed-use city looks like. “We expected high uptake of the plots, but the rate at which they are sold out has been exceptional,” he said.
As a master developer, Rendeavour is building seven new cities in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Zambia and Democratic Republic of Congo, and each city costs $250 million, all in a bid to create infrastructure, living and working spaces that will help sustain and accelerate Africa’s economic growth, meet the aspirations of Africa’s burgeoning middle classes, and serve as a catalyst for further urban development, said Stephen Jennings, the founder and CEO of Rendeavour.
In terms of taxes, partner and CEO of Taxaide, a tax management firm, Bidemi Olumide said, “LFZ is exempted from all federal, state and local government taxes, levies and rates while operating in the zone. Some of these taxes include: Value Added Tax (VAT), Withholding Tax (WHT), Company Income Tax and Custom/Import Duties. This has also been identified as a magnet for investors in Alaro City.
“These investors are attracted by, among other things, the tax breaks available with operating in a free trade zone. For your company to be operating in that territory, you have a significant rebate in taxes; and that is a conservative way of putting it. You have zero to no income taxes; you have no transactions taxes; etc.
“Then on the regulatory side, you are not dealing with multiple regulators; you are dealing with one regulator, which is the Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), who then organises all the relevant regulators under one umbrella so that you have only one port of call for all regulatory matters which significantly reduces your compliant costs.”