A property expert, Mr Kenneth Nduka has decried the rate at which foreign operators in the property sector are dominating the industry at the expense of the local operators.

Nduka, Vice President, Nigerian Institute of Building (NIOB) made the observation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Friday.

He said that the government, private individuals and corporate organisations were responsible for the dominance of the sector by foreigners.

Nduka said that most Nigerians gave preference to foreign operators while undermining the competence and capabilities of the local ones.

He explained that more than 80 per cent of construction works and contracts were being given to foreign contractors.

According to him, many Nigerians prefer foreign operators to local ones and thereby awards construction contracts to foreigners at the expense of their local counterparts.

“Local operators particularly in the construction industry have the capability and competence to deliver as better as the foreign ones if patronised and encouraged.

“Normally, construction works/contracts are supposed to be given to foreign contractors only when there is no local professional that has the competence to do such work.

“But in Nigeria, due to people’s over preference for foreign goods and services, virtually all construction contracts are being given to foreign companies.

“ And until Nigerians learn to appreciate, patronise, encourage and consume what they have locally, the country may not record significant economic growth.”

Nduka identified lack of adequate funding as a major challenge obstructing effective operation of the local operators in the building construction industry.

He said that some construction works required some kinds of lucrative machines which were too expensive to afford by the local operators.

“What makes foreign operators and contractors seem to be more competent is because they have the financial capacity to secure all kinds of expensive machinery that facilitate construction works.

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