Investment Opportunities In The Real Estate Industry In The South East

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Investment Opportunities In The Real Estate Industry In The South East

The Nigerian Real Estate market deficit is put at 17 million homes. New properties, estates which spring up everyday across the country focus majorly on the upscale luxury market leaving the middle class which has the greatest potential for any discerning developer.

Majority of the property owners in major cities across the country are Igbos. It is estimated that the value of real estate owned by Ndi Igbo outside the South East is over 20 trillion naira. Yet when you check the total value of assets which they own in the South East collectively is not even up to a tenth of the above amount.

The value of real estate in the South East is low when compared with other regions with entrepreneurial capabilities across the federation of Nigeria and the continent of Africa as well as the world. Since the Eastern Development Plan of Dr Michael Okpara as the Regional Premier of the Eastern Region, subsequent administrations in Igboland have not done much to develop the real estate potentials and make it attractive for investors. Onitsha , Aba and Nnewi despite their commercial status do not match with other business hubs in Nigeria when measuring average value of real estate in their territories. Until the state governments in Anambra and Abia States come up with Urban Renewal Programmes and Comprehensive Masterplans there will be no desire by Igbo and other investors to invest in high impact real estate projects that will transform these cities and make them livable.

The following are investment opportunities for investors in the South East. They include

Onitsha Central Business District: A Central Business District should be established by the Anambra State Government after the commencement and implementation of the Onitsha City Urban Renewal Programme in line with the Onitsha City Development Masterplan. This CBD will play host to the headquarters of Igbo owned conglomerates in the region, banks regional offices in the South East, regional offices of multinational corporations, e.t.c. A Central Business District will boost the value of Onitsha real estate as even world class trading centers will be established there by investors making it a truly global hub for commercial activities.

Onitsha Free Trade Zone: Onitsha’s status as the commercial nerve centre of the South East will come into full effect if a Free Trade Zone is established there with all sorts of multibillion dollar investments springing up as the spiraling effect will lead to an increase in the value of real estate in Onitsha and neighboring towns.

Onitsha Multistoried Apartments: Due to the scarcity of land in Onitsha, investors should build multistoried apartments of ten storeys and above to boost mass housing. This is necessary since the city is some metres above water level due to the Niger River which is within its vicinity in case there is an overflow that will cause severe flooding and affect numerous property.

Nnewi  Central Business District: A Central Business District in line with global standards should be developed in the commercial city which will play host to the headquarters of conglomerates based there and other global brands adding immense commercial value to real estate there. It will be a cluster of commercial activities that will boost the GDP of Anambra State.

Nnewi Automotive Technology Park: A Special Economic Zone should be established at Nnewi  that will be a cluster for the automotive industry which it is famed for where all the players in the value chain will operate in an environment with state of art facilities to unleash their creative talent. This project will increase the value of real estate in the city and can be established as a Public Private Partnership between the investors and the state government.

Ihiala Economic Zone: A special economic zone can be established at Ihiala where investors across the globe will find conducive with all the facilities and incentives for them. This will reduce the migration to the major commercial cities in the state where land is scarce as an alternative has been created for them and real estate investors in this zone will reap bountifully as long as they can meet the demand.

Umueri: As the site of the Anambra International Airport City which will play host to the biggest airport in West Africa and an aviation business hub that will accommodate thousands of people, there is no doubt that when the project is completed in 2020, the value of real estate in the community will witness an exponential effect as developers will scramble to get a piece of juicy land and build properties there for people to buy or lease smiling to the bank. For the discerning investor now is the time to purchase land and develop while the value is still affordable before it goes to an all time high.

Aba Central Business District: As one of the major commercial hubs of Igboland, the state of infrastructure in Aba is comatose which has affected it’s real estate industry negatively. A major urban renewal programme is seriously needed before investors will take the Japan of Africa seriously in terms of real estate infrastructure. A Central Business District with state of art facilities developed by the State Government in conjunction with private investors will witness a transformation in the town as Igbo industrialists from across the globe and other investors will set up their offices there to boost the commercial status of the city and increase the GDP of Abia State.

Aba Free Trade Zone: A Free Trade Zone in Aba will contribute immensely to unlocking the real estate potentials of the commercial hub as investors will flood to the area and set up businesses leading to an increase in the value of property sited there because developers will purchase land and build residences for those who work there to live in.

Enyimba Industrial City: The Enyimba Industrial City which is being promoted by the state government to boost the industrial value of the Aba axis is no doubt a good site for investors to purchase land and develop properties there for commercial and residential use.

Aba Inland Container Port: The ongoing Aba Inland Container Port project which is located at Avo Ntigha, Isiala Ngwa to serve as a point of clearing and receiving cargo bound for the South East is another good location for  investors to purchase land and develop properties that will boost the value of real estate in the Aba axis.

Enugwu Centenary City: The Enugwu Centenary City project which is a Public Private Partnership between the Enugwu State Government and private investors will transform the real estate potentials of the capital of the South Eastern region. Investors can purchase land within the area allocated and build housing units that will be comfortable and affordable.

Nsukka City: As the host city of the University of Nigeria which was the first tertiary institution in the South Eastern region, Nsukka is predominantly an agrarian community, but the current administration of His Excellency; Gov Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi is developing infrastructure to boost the town and make it an alternative settlement for people and reducing the pressure for migration to Enugwu city.

Enpower Free Trade Zone Area: The Enpower Free Trade Zone project which is located close to the Akanu Ibiam International Airport Enugwu and 9th Mile is to promote the industrial development of Enugwu State as all the major incentives to attract investors as obtainable in Free Trade Zones are available there, so investors can take advantage of this multibillion dollar project which will transform the South East and develop properties within this area.

New Owerri: Owerri as the capital city of Imo State has witnessed massive urbanization due to the proliferation of tertiary institutions which abound there and as such there is need for new settlements to be created in line with the Masterplan for socioeconomic development to take place. Investors can purchase and develop property in the New Owerri which is being promoted by the state government.

Orlu and Okigwe City: As the two major zones after the Owerri/Mbaise axis there is an urgent need to develop them to become modern cities in line with their Masterplans. Investors can purchase land and build massive projects that will impact the socio economic profile of these two zones and make them alternative settlements to the state capital.


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Nnamdi Odumody is the Director of Research and Strategic Partnerships at Wiretooth Technologies, an organization which believes in using technology to ensure digital transformation across different verticals. He is a Strategist and passionate about the Socio Economic Transformation of Igboland.