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Economic Impact of Akwa Ibom State International Stadium Uyo - [The Multipler Effect]

-  Economic Impact Analysis of Akwa Ibom State International Stadium to the City of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State and Environs, Nigeria As A Whole -  The multipler Effect
Written By Benson Chukwueke, Sports Marketing Consultant; CEO, GreenHunters Sports International 

Lets look at the 32 seater edifice in the city of Uyo. Perhaps, the most beautiful stadium in Nigeria today. The magnificent sports center has attracted lots of top class matches and sports events that it is now nicknamed "The Nest of Champions."

Some politicians in Akwa Ibom state had once jostled with naming it "Godswill Akpabio International stadium, Perhaps, to show appreciation to their former governor for embarking on such  gigantic project during his tenure.

Well, Godswill Akpabio didn't build the stadium with his own money, but with the tax payers fund.  So, it is more appropriate to name it "Akwa Ibom State International Stadium Uyo."

There has been heated argument in some quarters that building of such stadium was a white elephant project and a waste of tax payers money. Stadiums are grossly underutilized in Nigeria and hardly generate enough revenue to return on investment. Moreover, due to the high cost of maintenance, the stadium is left to dilapidate overtime....why many stadia in Nigeria today are in deplorable condition now.

What is the economic impact of investing N20 billion in such gigantic project? That hardly generate N100 million per year in ticketing, parking space, concessions, advertising billboards...and has overhead and maintenance cost of over N80 million per year.

Well, the economic impact of projects like Akwa Ibom International stadium cannot be measured only by such direct revenue as mentioned above, but by the "Multipler Effect."

The impact on the overall economy of the city of Uyo and the entire Akwa Ibom state. The economy of neighbouring cities like Calabar, Port Harcourt, Aba and Umuahia.

As I mentioned before, the stadium has attracted lots of top class matches: Nigeria national team (Super Eagles) World cup and AFCON qualifiers. These period Super Eagles attract a lot of visitors to the state during their one or two weeks camping in the state.

Akwa United, the state's professional football club play their NPFL, Federations cup and CAF confederation cup matches in the stadium.

Some of the area that receive direct Multipler effects are:
1. Transportation sector, both land and air. During these continental matches there are a lot of traffic thru and fro the city of Uyo and the entire Akwa Ibom neighbouring cities of Calabar, Aba, Umuahia and Port Harcourt.

2. Hotel Accommodation: during these matches you hardly find an unoccupied hotel accommodations even as far as in neighbouring cities of Port Harcourt, Calabar and Aba.

3. Restaurants, eateries, night clubs and other event centers get astronomically patronage from visitors and from the beehives of people and activities in the city.

4. Tourism: during the period visitors take time out to visit other tourism sites in the state. In all there are more business going on in several sectors of the economy.

There are also indirect multipler effects Akwa Ibom State International stadium bring to the economy of the state.
1. More Business and Employment: Due to the beehives of activities created by sports events going in the stadium, more entrepreneurs spring up and consesquently more people get employed and earn a lot of money.

2. Constant Upgrade of Infrastructures: due to some of these international engagement hosted in the stadium, both federal and state government are constantly compelled to upgrade infrastructures such as road, electricity supply, security the state.

3. Media Attention: Akwa Ibom state receive a lot of media exposure from these international matches hosted at the stadium, which portray the state in a positive light among the committee of nations. Some of these sports engagements results to business connections, partnership and collaborations, which give birth to big business that greatly impact the economy of the state on the longrun.

4. Healthy Population: Although, this is more direct economic impact, as the stadium provide a place where the populace can go regular to exercise and engage in healthy sports activities.

Inconclusion, we can say the Akwa Ibom State International stadium is making a lot of economic impact and is worthy every kobo invested in it. However, the state government and commissioner for sports should source to host more regular and benefiting sports events like Fifa competitions, All African games, Caf Competitions,  Federation cup finals, National Sports festival, Super 4 tournament...

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