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Lagos Renters Struggle as Soaring Costs Push Housing Out of Reach

The rising prices, driven by poor macro-economic conditions, inflation, high interest and exchange rates, as well as escalating building material costs, have created a daunting situation for renters, pushing the dream of finding suitable housing further out of reach.

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Lagos, the bustling economic hub of Nigeria, is currently witnessing a daunting challenge in its rental market as soaring costs make housing increasingly unaffordable for many residents.

The rising prices, driven by poor macro-economic conditions, inflation, high interest and exchange rates, as well as escalating building material costs, have created a daunting situation for renters, pushing the dream of finding suitable housing further out of reach.

Landlords in Lagos, particularly those in highly sought-after areas such as Lagos Island, Ikeja, and Victoria Island, are capitalizing on the high demand for rental properties by substantially increasing rents.

This surge in rental prices has left countless tenants grappling with the harsh reality that their hard-earned incomes may no longer suffice to secure a decent home in a desirable location.

According to Moruf Akinderu-Fatai, the state’s commissioner for housing, the rental market in Lagos is exceptionally active, with a staggering 80 percent of its 20 million population residing in rented accommodation.

Among the various types of housing available, 2-bedroom flats are witnessing the highest demand. This surge in popularity can be attributed to a multitude of factors, including the economic challenges that have caused many individuals to lose their jobs or face salary cuts.

Also, young executives and aging individuals seeking downsized living spaces often find 2-bedroom flats to be the ideal choice.

In Lagos, the average rental price for a 2-bedroom flat stands at ₦2 million per annum. However, the rental spectrum is vast, with the most expensive flats commanding a staggering ₦14 million per annum, while the cheapest options are listed at ₦350,000 per annum.

Such exorbitant prices have left prospective renters in a predicament, struggling to find affordable options that meet their needs.

Nevertheless, amidst the bleak rental landscape, there are a few pockets in Lagos that offer some respite for tenants seeking moderately priced housing. Locations such as Ilupeju, Gbagada, and Surulere, which are considered middle-class settlements, present opportunities for tenants to secure 2-bedroom flats with rents ranging from ₦1 million to ₦2 million per annum.

Ilupeju, affectionately known as ‘Indian Village,’ is located on the Lagos mainland within the Mushin Local Government Area. This area attracts tenants not only due to its well-developed road infrastructure but also its accessibility and ease of transportation to other parts of the city. The average rent for a 2-bedroom flat in Ilupeju is approximately ₦1.5 million per annum, with rental prices spanning from ₦1 million to ₦4.9 million per annum, depending on the specific property.

Gbagada, positioned between the Kosofe and Shomolu local governments, is another favored location for renters. Despite the slightly higher prices, Gbagada’s prime positioning and residential ambiance make it an appealing choice. The average rent for a 2-bedroom flat in Gbagada hovers around ₦1.7 million per annum, while the rental range extends from ₦720,000 to ₦2.9 million per annum.

Surulere, a residential and commercial Local Government Area on the Lagos mainland, commands relatively higher rental prices due to its close proximity to Lagos Island, the city’s economic center. The average rent for a 2-bedroom flat in Surulere stands at ₦1.6 million per annum. The rental spectrum in Surulere spans from ₦584,000 per annum for the cheapest flats to ₦3.5 million per annum for the most expensive options.

As the rental crisis in Lagos deepens, prospective tenants find themselves in a precarious situation. Balancing affordability and location preferences has become an arduous task, with limited options available. Renters must exercise caution and thoroughly navigate the challenging housing market to secure suitable accommodation that aligns with their budgetary constraints and lifestyle needs. Unless effective measures are implemented to address the affordability crisis, Lagos residents may continue to endure the hardships of an increasingly unattainable rental market.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Businessinsider, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Goya Foods Takes Legal Action to Assert ‘Goya Olive Oil’ Trademark Ownership

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“Goya Olive Oil” trademark in Nigeria, Goya Foods Incorporated has initiated legal proceedings against the Registrar of Trademarks under the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment.

The case, numbered FHC/ABJ/CS/883/2023, was brought before the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Goya Foods, a prominent producer and distributor of foods and beverages across the United States, Spanish-speaking countries, and Nigeria, seeks to enforce a longstanding consent judgment issued by the court in December 2006.

The judgment directed the Registrar to rectify the Trademarks Register to reflect Goya Foods Incorporated as the rightful owner of the “Goya Olive Oil” trademark, without any further formalities.

The lawsuit, exclusively revealed to sources, underscores Goya Foods’ determination to safeguard its intellectual property against alleged infringements.

According to court documents, Goya Foods obtained the consent judgment against Chikason Industries Limited, which was accused of marketing “Goya Olive Oil” in Nigeria, thus infringing on Goya Foods’ registered trademark.

Legal counsel for Goya Foods, Ade Adedeji, SAN, emphasized the necessity of rectifying the Trademarks Register to protect their trademark interests effectively.

Despite appeals to the Registrar, the requested rectification has not been implemented, prompting Goya Foods to escalate the matter through legal channels.

The case has been adjourned to September 27, 2024, for further proceedings, highlighting the complexity and significance of trademark disputes in the global marketplace.

Goya Foods remains committed to upholding its brand integrity and securing its proprietary interests amidst the evolving landscape of international trademark law.

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IOCs Accused of Blocking Direct Crude Sales to Dangote Refinery

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Dangote Industries Limited (DIL) has accused International Oil Companies (IOCs) of obstructing direct crude oil sales to its refinery and forcing the company to use costly middlemen.

This development comes after a statement by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) suggested a “willing buyer-willing seller” dynamic was in place as mandated by the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).

Devakumar Edwin, Vice President of DIL, countered NUPRC CEO Gbenga Komolafe’s claims, stating that IOCs consistently make it difficult for local refiners by pushing sales through international trading arms, which inflate prices and bypass Nigerian laws.

“These middlemen earn unjustified margins on crude produced and consumed within Nigeria,” Edwin stated.

He noted that only one local producer, Sapetro, has sold directly to DIL, while others insist on using trading arms abroad.

Edwin detailed the financial impact, citing instances where DIL was charged a $2-$4 premium per barrel above the official price.

In April, DIL paid $96.23 per barrel for Bonga crude, which included significant premiums, compared to a much lower premium for West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude.

While acknowledging NUPRC’s support in resolving some supply issues, Edwin urged the regulatory body to revisit pricing policies to ensure fair market practices.

“Market liquidity is essential for fair pricing. We hope NUPRC addresses these issues to prevent price gouging,” he stated.

This dispute highlights ongoing challenges in Nigeria’s oil sector, where domestic refiners struggle to secure local crude amidst complex market dynamics.

The outcome of these negotiations could significantly impact the refinery’s operations and broader industry practices.

The situation underscores the need for transparent and efficient crude supply systems to bolster Nigeria’s refining capacity and economic growth.

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Dangote’s $20 Billion Refinery to Begin Petrol Sales Next Month

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Aliko Dangote announced on Monday that his long-awaited $20 billion refinery complex will commence petrol sales starting next month.

The announcement came during a press briefing held at the refinery site in Lagos, where Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man, detailed the project’s progress and future plans.

“We are proud to announce that the Dangote Refinery will begin selling petrol from August,” Dangote stated confidently.

“This milestone marks the culmination of years of meticulous planning, construction, and overcoming numerous challenges.”

Dangote’s refinery, touted as the largest single-train refinery in the world, is designed to process 650,000 barrels of crude oil per day once fully operational.

The facility aims to not only meet Nigeria’s domestic demand for refined petroleum products but also contribute significantly to export markets across West Africa.

“We have entered the steady-state production phase earlier this year, and now we are ready to begin commercial sales,” Dangote explained. “Initially, we will focus on petrol production, with plans to expand our product range as we ramp up to full capacity.”

The refinery’s launch is expected to alleviate Nigeria’s longstanding dependence on imported refined products, thereby boosting the country’s energy security and reducing foreign exchange outflows associated with fuel imports.

Beyond petrol sales, Dangote revealed ambitious plans to list both the refinery and its associated fertilizer plant on the Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX) by the first quarter of 2025.

This move aims to attract broader investor participation and unlock additional value for shareholders.

“We are committed to transparency and accountability in our operations,” Dangote emphasized. “Listing these subsidiaries on the NGX will not only strengthen our corporate governance framework but also enhance the refinery’s financial sustainability.”

Challenges and Future Prospects

Despite celebrating the imminent commencement of petrol sales, Dangote acknowledged challenges encountered during the project’s execution, including delays in securing land for a petrochemical facility in Ogun State, which incurred substantial costs.

“We faced bureaucratic hurdles that resulted in significant delays and financial losses,” Dangote lamented. “Nevertheless, we remain steadfast in our commitment to advancing Nigeria’s industrial capabilities and contributing to economic growth.”

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