The Most Developed State in Nigeria (2021 Top 10 States)

The Top 10 Most developed State in Nigeria
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Are you looking for information on the most developed state in Nigeria?

Well, good thing you’re here then.

This article discusses the most developed states in Nigeria and the factors that make them worthy of the list.

Have a nice read.

Most Developed State in Nigeria – An Introduction

Nigeria is a country blessed with so many beautiful states – some more than others.

While traveling around the country, you are bound to come across some magnificent cities that will blow your mind with their levels of infrastructural development, vegetation, and overall aesthetic scenery.

The most developed state in Nigeria is one we probably know already, but there are some other states whose presence on our list may come as a shock.

Get ready to be enlightened. 

Related: Most Populated State in Nigeria; Top 10

Factors that Determine the Level of Development in the Nigerian States

Before going into the main focus, it is important to note what factors determine the level of development in a particular state.

Here are some of those factors:

  • Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
  • Power supply
  • Standard of Education
  • Internally Generated Revenue (IGR)
  • Availability of drinking water
  • Federal Allocation to States
  • Quality of healthcare systems
  • Good road networks

Top 10 Most Developed States in Nigeria (In No Particular Order)

Lagos State – The Most Developed State in Nigeria.

Yes.

Lagos comes first on our list of most developed states in Nigeria, and why not?

The “Center of Excellence” is the business melting pot of Nigeria and is also the richest state in Nigeria.

Almost every industry – both domestic and multinational companies in Nigeria has at least one facility in Lagos, and this has greatly driven the overall development of the state into the stars.

In 2020, Lagos State had the highest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of all 36 states in Nigeria with 33.68 billion USD.

In recent years, the region has also experienced a massive boost in real estate, with places like Banana Island, Lekki Phase 1, Ikoyi, Eko Atlantic, and Ikeja GRA – just to mention a few.

Related: Top 18 Places to Stay in Lagos

The state might be infamous for its level of traffic congestion, but it is also home to some amazing road networks and structures such as the Third Mainland Bridge and the Lekki-Ikoyi Link Bridge. 

Related: Third Mainland Bridge; 7 Interesting Facts

Lagos State is arguably the most developed and also the most beautiful state in Nigeria. 

Anambra State

Anambra State is home to some of the major business cities in Nigeria.

The high economic potential of these cities such as Nnewi, Awka, and Onitsha have championed the development of this state above most in the southeast and the country.

It’s amongst the richest states in the southeast geopolitical zone.

When it comes to the level of literacy, Anambra state’s population is almost second to none, as most of its dwellers are highly educated.

Related: Top 9 Hotels in Onitsha, Anambra State

Natural gas, bauxite, and crude oil are some of the natural resources present in this state.

The revenue generated from these resources, in combination with efficient policies has fuelled the amazing growth and development observable in the country.

There’s an amazing standard of living within the state too in terms of cost of living and availability of basic amenities. 

The “Light of the nation” clearly shines brighter than many other states when it comes to development, which is why it is on our list. 

Related: Top 10 Hotels in Awka, Anambra State

Rivers State

Oil money is big money, and when it comes to oil, Rivers State has a ton of it.

The revenue generated from Rivers State has not only driven development within the state but also in Nigeria as a whole.

Port-Harcourt is the capital city of Rivers State, and as everyone knows, that region is a hub of many commercial activities in the country.

Related: Oil Producing States in Nigeria & Barrels per Day, History and Refineries

Also, there’s an aesthetic presence in the city, making it one of the most beautiful cities in Nigeria.

There’s also an elite level of urbanization within the state thanks to the presence of facilities like two major seaports, world-class resorts, multinational companies, a superb healthcare system, an airport, good road networks, various industrial estates, and oil refineries. 

Related: Top International Airports in Nigeria

Rivers State’s GDP stands at 21.073 billion USD, which is second only to that of Lagos State.

These and many more are reasons why Rivers state is one of the most developed states in Nigeria. 

Related: Schlumberger Nigeria; Top 17 Things You Wished You Knew About Them

Abia State

This is another top oil-producing state in Nigeria, and as we have said before, oil money is big money.

But oil money isn’t the only reputable development driving factor in Abia State.

Two of the state’s major cities – Umuahia, the capital, and Aba are gargantuan forces behind the rate of development within the state.

Aba is one of the major commercial and manufacturing cities in Nigeria being home to the popular Ariaria International Market.

Items such as clothing materials, footwear, cement, textile materials, soap, and a long list of other products are manufactured within the state.

This level of industrialization will surely launch any state into a phase of rapid development, and Abia State is currently in that phase. 

Abia State is one of the most peaceful states in the country, which is commendable, despite the presence of oil in the region.

This peace and absence of insurgency in the state have allowed for major growth and development in the region. 

Related: Festivals in Abia State; No 3 will Surprise You

Enugu State

When talking about the most developed states in Nigeria, it would be impossible to exclude Enugu State.

It is a state in the southeastern region of Nigeria and just like many other states in that region, it is a highly developed area.

What is probably the most commendable feature of the state is its landscape and scenery, which makes it a top tourist site in the country. 

Related: Tourist Attractions in Enugu State; Top 7 to Know

Enugu State is also home to some of the most prestigious higher institutions in Nigeria such as the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and the State University of Science and Technology (ESUT)).

Combined with basic amenities such as good roads and relatively stable electricity, it is no doubt that Enugu State, fondly called “the Coal City” is one of the most developed regions in Nigeria. 

Related: Top 7 Things To Do In Enugu State; Never miss No. 5

Akwa Ibom

It should be no surprise that one of the states with the top 5 GDPs in Nigeria is on the list of the most developed states in Nigeria.

The feats, exploits, and development visible in the state are a result of the IGR and the efforts and policies of past governments in the region.

Akwa Ibom is currently home to what is called the best stadium in Nigeria – the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium. 

Related: Football Academy in Nigeria; Top 11 Academies for Football

Asides from the observable infrastructural development in the state, the government also invests a lot of monetary and human efforts for poverty alleviation and job creation.

This in turn has created a society of capable individuals who can give back to society by igniting and sustaining development.

Oyo State

Oyo State is located in the Southwest region of Nigeria and is one of the country’s largest economies.

The state’s major driving force comes from its agricultural prowess – one which is rivaled by only a few in the country.

Oyo State has a GDP of 16.75 billion USD, a value which sits in the top 5 in Nigeria. 

Ibadan, the state capital is home to the University of Ibadan, one of the most prestigious universities and arguably the best university in Nigeria.

The region is rapidly developing especially in terms of foreign investors and basic social amenities, and in a couple of years, the transformation would be astonishing to behold. 

Ogun State

The Gateway State” as it is most fondly called is one of the most developed states in Nigeria.

This is majorly due to the influx of private and public companies into the region and its impressive internally generated revenue.

Under the administration of former Governor Senator Ibikunle Amosun, the state experienced a great revolution in terms of infrastructure.

His administration saw the completion of various road networks and bridges that have positively influenced the lives of the dwellers. 

The state is also one of the most industrialized regions in Nigeria, and with these industries come revenue packages that have been implemented in the state’s transformation.

When it comes to education, Ogun State is a haven of top-notch higher institutions such as the Federal University of Agriculture, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Federal Polytechnic Illaro, and Covenant University – just to mention a few.

Ogun State might not be as highly developed and urbanized as Lagos State, but a couple of years of development will even the odds. 

Kano State

This may come as a surprise to many, but Kano State is on our list of the most developed states in Nigeria.

This is majorly due to the industrialization potential of the region.

Kano State is in the northern part of Nigeria, and it is home to many industries in Nigeria.

These industries range from food and beverage companies to pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, furniture, footwear, and the tye and dye industry.

The light sandy soils of the region are also perfect for growing peanuts and groundnuts, which are both major exports in Nigeria.

Kano State is also a major source of other crops like onions, sorghum, millet, tobacco, wheat, and many more. 

Kano State also has a GDP of 12.39 billion USD – one of the highest in the country. A major step towards ensuring urbanization and overall development in the region was taken by the creation of the Kano State Urban Planning and Development Authority – a government body set up to champion the development of the state by the demolition of “illegal” and weak structures. 

Abuja

Yes.

Abuja is the Federal Capital Territory, and not a state, but it would be terrible of us not to include the region in our list.

Abuja replaced Lagos State as Nigeria’s capital on December 12, 1991, and since then the region has experienced massive growth and development in all spheres.

Related: Most Beautiful Places in Abuja; 10 to Know

The Capital is home to some of the most amazing cities in Nigeria, and there are various multinational and domestic industries operating in the region.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About the Developed States in Nigeria

Which is the Richest State in Nigeria?

Lagos State

This should come as a surprise to no one.

As the most industrialized region in Nigeria, it a no-brainer that it would be the richest of all states in the country.

In the H1 2020, Lagos State had an impressive N204,514,128,940.78 in naira – a value that almost doubled by the end of the year.

Other regions that classify as the richest states in Nigeria are:

  • Rivers State
  • Imo State
  • Edo State
  • Delta State
  • Oyo State
  • Kano State
  • Akwa Ibom State

Related: The Richest State in Nigeria; Top 10

Which State is Most Developed?

Lagos State

Once again, Lagos State pops up as the most developed state in Nigeria, and why not?

The region experiences industrialization unlike any other in the country.

There are many facilities and amenities in Lagos State, that some other regions can only dream of.

The exquisite real estate enterprise in Lagos State and many other factors make Lagos State the most developed state in Nigeria. 

Which Region is the Most Developed in Nigeria?

The Southwest region. 

Although arguable, the Southwest region is the most developed in Nigeria.

Related: Geopolitical Zones in Nigeria; States, & Ethnic Groups

This should come as no surprise because Southwest states in Nigeria such as Ogun State, Lagos State, Osun State, Oyo State, and Ekiti State are some of the most developed states in the country.

Each of these states displays a relatively high level of development than other regions in the country. 

The South-South region is a close second when it comes to development in Nigeria.

South-South states in Nigeria include; 

  • Akwa-Ibom State
  • Bayelsa State
  • Cross River State
  • Delta State
  • Edo State, and
  • Rivers State.

Related: Niger Delta States; History, Governors, Population, All to Know

Which State is the Best to Live in Nigeria?

Enugu State, Oyo State, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, and Lagos State are considered some of the best states to live in Nigeria.

If there is one thing these states have in common, it is the fact that they are peaceful regions, with no case of insurgency in recent years. 

Related: Top 9 States That Pay Corpers State Allowance

Which State is the Most Developed and Why?

Lagos State is the most developed state in Nigeria and the reason why is not rocket science

The state is home to many international and domestic companies and enterprises, which makes its level of industrialization second to none.

Some of the companies you can find in Lagos include;

The presence and influx of businesses into Lagos State helps employ its dwellers, and also generates revenue for the government.

Another reason why Lagos is the most developed state in Nigeria is its real estate potential.

Everyone knows about places like Eko Atlantic, Banana Island, Ikeja, and Lekki – locations in Lagos that have the best housing and estate options in the whole country. 

Lagos State is also where you will find most Nigerian celebrities and politicians.

This means there are facilities in the region that support their 5-star needs.

If these facilities are absent, a company or individual comes through to establish them. 

“The Centre of Excellence” is also the commercial hub of Nigeria.

Most of Nigeria’s exports and imports come in through Lagos State via road, air, or sea.

These factors and more make Lagos state a highly developed state and maybe the most developed. 

Which State is the Cleanest in Nigeria?

Akwa Ibom State

According to Clean Up Nigeria (CUN) and some other sources, Akwa Ibom State is the cleanest state in Nigeria.

The state is also home to the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, arguably the best stadium in Nigeria.

It is located in the South-South region of Nigeria. 

Related: Niger Delta area in Nigeria; States in Niger Delta, & All to Know

Which State in Nigeria is Most Educated?

Imo State is the most educated state in Nigeria. 

With a literacy rate of 96%, Imo State stands as the state with the most educated population in Nigeria.

Some of the higher institutions in Imo State include:

  • Imo State University
  • Eastern Palm University
  • Imo State Polytechnic
  • Hezekiah University
  • Federal University of Technology, Owerri

Other states with relatively high literacy rates are: 

  • Osun State (80%)
  • Anambra (75%)
  • Ekiti State (74%)
  • Abia State (73)
  • Rivers State (72.5%)

Which is the Finest City in Nigeria?

Lagos City

There are many beautiful cities in Nigeria – some of which will take your breath away quite literally, but Lagos City is arguably atop of the pile.

It is the best city in Nigeria.

During the day, your eyes can feed on all the exquisite cars on the beautifully tarred roads and expertly constructed bridges, beach resorts, hotels, company buildings, and other structures that are aesthetically pleasing.

When the sun sets, Lagos will take you to a nightlife realm, unlike nothing you’ve ever seen before.

There are many elegant bars, clubs, and restaurants whose shining lights shine almost as beautiful as the aurora Polaris. 

Lagos City is a beautiful place, and arguably the most beautiful city in Nigeria. 

Top Read: Top 50 Richest Musician in Nigeria; A Complete List (Updated)

What is the Combined IGR of States in Nigeria in 2020?

According to the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics, the internally generated revenue at the state level for the first half (H1) of 2020 was 612.87 billion Naira, which is a lower figure compared to 2019’s 693.91 billion Naira (11.7% reduction).

For the second quarter (Q2) of 2020, a figure of 259.73 billion Naira was recorded- again, a lower figure compared to the previous year’s 353.14 billion naira (26.5% reduction). 

What is Nigeria’s GDP per Capita in 2020?

2019 was the last time Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product per capita was recorded.

At the time, it was at 2386.90 USD.

It is projected that Nigeria’s GDP will trend to around 2,300 USD in 2021 and 2,450 USD in 2022. 

What is GNI per Capita?

Gross National Income (GNI) per capita is the sum of a country’s GDP and net income from overseas (in dollars) divided by its overall population.

It is a figure that determines or rates the standard of living of the average citizen in each country.

It is also known as Per Capita Income.

Nigeria’s per capita income in 2019 was 2,157 USD.

Conclusion on the Most Developed State in Nigeria.

It is important to note that while the most developed states in Nigeria usually have the largest share on the Nigerian states allocation list, this is not the only factor responsible for their better development.

Other factors such as influx and presence of enterprises, good government policies, internally generated revenue (IGR), and many more are responsible too.

Of course, this list is bound to change as many states are gearing up to take over the scene.

However, this is what it is for now. 

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