In the report which was signed by Statistician General, Yemi Kale in collaboration with the Joint Tax Board, Lagos State generated 185.541 billion naira in 2010, 202.761 billion naira in 2011 and 219.202 billion naira in 2012 making it the state with the highest internally generated revenue(IGR).
“First of all, we see patterns. Lagos stands out from the rest of the country, totally in a class of its own. Two, the south is totally different from the north and generally the economies in the north evidently lag behind,” Opeyemi Agbaje, CEO of RTC Advisory Services told CNBC Africa.
According to Agbaje, the data showed the impact of the major population and commercial centres especially in Southern Nigeria.
“So we see that the top seven or eight states are Lagos, Rivers, Delta, Akwa Ibom, Oyo, Enugu, and Cross River. Relatively, the South West stands out even from the rest of the South region. All of these give you a sense around the state of economic development in the regions,” he added.
Rivers State came in behind Lagos state with 173.047 billion naira and a breakdown showed that the state generated 49.585 billion naira in 2010, 57.187 billion naira in 2011 and 66.275 billion naira in 2012.
Delta ranked third with the most IGR, the data revealed that 26.087 billion naira was collected in 2010, 34.750 billion naira in 2011 and 45.566 billion naira in 2012.
“It also reflects the social statistics in terms of education, entrepreneurial activities, the development of businesses, the development of commerce and industries across those regions.”
Nonetheless, most states in the North reported very low IGR’s and Agbaje believes that the social systems in that region are faulty, especially the educational system.
“You can’t build entrepreneurial activity if your people are not educated. You can’t build small businesses, IT businesses, small shops and supermarkets, based on an illiterate population. Principally, the major element for me is, dealing with education,” he explained.
While Sokoto state collected the least IGR of 3.888 biliion naira because the state’s IGR for 2011 and 2012 could not be computed, Yobe State’s IGR declined from 5.960 billion naira in 2010 to 1.785 billion naira in 2012.
“On the part of the Government, it probably reflects the state of the investment climate across regions. So government, have they created infrastructure, have they created incentives, have they created laws, have they created security? All of those things are what would want to make investors invest in the region,” he said.