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BPE Justifies N213b Intervention Fund

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BPE Justifies N213b Intervention Fund

BPE Justifies N213b Intervention Fund

By Dipo Olowookere

The Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) put the accumulated shortfall due to wrongly assumed Aggregate Technical, Commercial and Collection (ATC &C) of 25 per cent from November 1, 2013 to December 31, 2014 at N213 billion.

According to BPE, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN’s) N213 billion intervention fund was made available to enable Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) spread the recovery of the money from the consumers over a ten year period.

Acting Director-General of BPE, Dr Vincent Onome Akpotaire, who made this disclosure in a statement, explaining why the CBN gave a loan of N213 billion to the privatized power companies, said that the  “Multi-Year Tariff Order 2 (2012) that was put in place when investors took over on November 1, 2013, had assumed AT & C loss level of 25 per cent.

He stated that the agreements signed with the investors gave Nigeria Electricity and Regulatory Commission and the Distribution Companies (DISCOs) one year to determine the true AT & C loss levels, which was subsequently found to be about 50 per cent on the average.

Expatiating on why the core investors in DISCOs were not investing heavily in line with the agreements they signed with the government, he said the transaction structure compelled investors to raise money and pay for their 60 per cent equity in DISCOs using their own balance sheet and that upon take over, the investors were expected to leverage on the acquired companies’ clean balance sheets to raise additional funds for investments.

However, he pointed out that financial institutions have refused to lend money to the DISCOs until a cost reflective tariff is approved in line with the agreements; and the CBN loan to the industry removed from the books of the DISCOs.

Akpotaire suggested that for the power privatization in Nigeria to work, the industry’s regulator- NERC must be allowed to perform its mandate without interference.

He said that NERC must be allowed to fix tariffs in line with the Electric Power Sector Reform Act (EPSRA) without interference from any quarters and that if the tariffs are considered high the government could decide to mitigate the effects by taking up a percentage of the tariffs instead of outright cancellation.

The Acting Director-General cautioned against the blame-game in the power sector and appealed to  the Executive and the Legislative arms of the government as well as other stakeholders to  come together  to find solutions to the sector’s challenges.

Explaining why the Federal Government is being asked to subsidise the Nigeria Electric Supply Industry (NESI), the BPE’s helmsman said the loss levels at the point of privatistion of 50 per cent could not be fully passed to consumers immediately to avoid rate shock and consumer rebellion.

Akpotaire said, “although the Federal Government owns 40 per cent of the DISCOs, it was not part of the management because it was not funding its shares on the Boards. The Performance Agreement executed with investors has assigned operational risks to investors. The PA provides that a core investor who fails to achieve agreed targets stands the risk of losing his/her equity at the payment of $1 by the Federal Government.”

On why the BPE is on the Boards of the power companies, the Acting Director-General explained that “since 1988 when TCPC, the agency BPE replaced, was established, BPE has always represented the Federal Government on the board of any company undergoing reform and privatisation.” This makes it possible for the BPE to have access to all the information it require to carry out its statutory duties of reform and privatization, “Since all key strategic decisions are made by the board, it would not make sense for BPE to give guarantees on behalf of a company it does not know the critical decisions that its boards had taken.” Besides, he added, “The initial five-year period is usually a time to help nurture the companies on the path of growth and success.”

Guardian

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan. Mr Olowookere can be reached via dipo.olowookere@businesspost.ng

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Economy

NNPC’ll Earn More Revenue—Kyari

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NNPC Dangote Refinery

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) is set to earn more revenue for the country as the federal government has positioned it to become the most capitalised company in Africa, says the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the company, Mr Mele Kyari.

This will happen as the central government has commenced full implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) in earnest.

Mr Kyari made this assertion while addressing staff in a town hall meeting at the weekend said the PIA had put “all money-making options on the table; it is up to us to take advantage of it”.

Highlighting the significance of the PIA to the NNPC and by extension the Nigerian economy, Mr Kyari said the new legislation has raised shareholders’ expectations on the company, even as it has given it wide room to make progress.

He said as a result of the new legislation, NNPC Limited would not only shed some of its toxic liabilities but will be the largest and most capitalised company in the whole of Africa and, potentially, the most profitable on the entire continent.

The CEO charged employees of the organisation to ensure that the company becomes a commercially viable entity and a multi-billion-dollar company that will continuously deliver value to its shareholders–the over two hundred million Nigerians.

Business Post had reported that President Muhammadu Buhari recently instituted the board of NNPC Limited led by Mrs Margery Chuba Okadigbo, Chairman, Mr Mele Kolo Kyari, Chief Executive Officer, Mr Umar I. Ajiya, Chief Financial Officer, Mr Tajudeen Umar (North East), Mrs Lami O. Ahmed (North Central), Mallam Mohammed Lawal (North West), Mr Henry Obih (South East), Barrister Constance Harry Marshal (South-South), and Mr Pius Akinyelure (South West).

Others included Mr Nasir Sani Gwarzo, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources and Mr Aliyu Ahmed, Permanent Secretary, Minister, Finance, Budget and National Planning.

The President charged the board members to enforce the reforms put forward by the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, which seeks to reposition the Nigerian petroleum industry to a commercially viable and competitive industry in line with global business dynamics and best practices.

“The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited is mandated to focus on profitability and continuous value creation beyond the simple fulfilment of legal and regulatory requirements.

“NNPC Limited is expected to operate at par with its industry peers across the world while acting as Enabler Company that will foster the development of other sectors of our economy,” he said.

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Economy

Gains in NDEP, Nipco Push NASD Exchange 0.25% Higher

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NDEP

By Adedapo Adesanya

The week ended in the positive territory on the floor of the NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) Securities Exchange following a 0.25 per cent rise on Friday, January 14.

The favourable outcome came on the back of gains recorded by the duo of Niger Delta Exploration and Production (NDEP) Plc and Nipco Plc.

NDEP Plc appreciated by N2.5 or 1.1 per cent during the session to close at N238.00 per unit as against N235.50 per unit it finished at the preceding session, while Nipco Plc improved by N6 or 8.7 per cent to close at N69.00 per unit compared with N63.00 per unit it closed at the previous session.

As a result of the good performances put up by the two stocks, the NASD unlisted security index (NSI) moved up by 1.86 points to 750.02 points from 748.16 points, while market capitalisation gained N1.58 billion to wrap the day at N635.10 billion in contrast to N633.52 billion it closed on Thursday.

There was no price loser during the trading day, through the trading volume slid by 36.9 per cent as a total of 207,618 units of shares exchanged hands compared with 329,347 units transacted on Thursday.

But the trading value rose by 15.6 per cent to N10.7 million from the previous day’s value of N9.3 million, while the number of deals depreciated by 36.4 per cent as only seven deals were carried out compared to the 11 deals executed at the previous session.

Central Securities Clearing Systems (CSCS) Plc remained as the most active stock by volume (year-to-date) as it has traded 1.02 million units of its shares for N19.9 million. Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc was in second place for transacting 40,804 units of its stocks valued at N4.8 million, while NDEP Plc was in third place with 28,289 units valued at N6.7 million.

Also, CSCS Plc ended the session as the most traded stock by value with a turnover of 1.0 million units exchanged at N19.9 million, NDEP Plc trailed with 28,289 units worth N6.7 million, while Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc has exchanged 40,804 units worth for N4.8 million.

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Economy

28.7% Drop in I&E Turnover Strengthens Naira to N416.00/$1

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Naira BDC Segment

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Naira closed the week stronger against the US Dollar at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) segment of the foreign exchange (forex) market on Friday, January 14.

At the I&E window, the local currency appreciated by 0.06 per cent or 50 kobo to trade at N416.00/$1 as against N416.50/$1 it closed on Thursday.

The strengthening of the local currency happened on the back of a 28.7 per cent or $49.59 million fall in turnover at the market segment as data obtained by Business Post from the FMDQ Securities Exchange showed that transactions worth $123.4 million were carried out compared with the $172.99 million recorded at the previous session.

However, at the interbank window of the market, the Naira recorded a flat outcome against the United States Dollar, closing at N414.79/$1, the same rate of the preceding day.

In the same vein, the domestic currency closed flat against the Pound Sterling on Friday at N565.57/£1 and against the Euro, the exchange rate of the indigenous currency remained intact at N475.22/€1.

Meanwhile, at the cryptocurrency market, six of the 10 digital currencies tracked by the newspaper across several trading platforms appreciated in value.

The highest gainer was Cardano (ADA) as it moved higher by 7.4 per cent to trade at N783.58, Tron (TRX) made a 3.8 per cent gain to sell at N40.46, Litecoin (LTC) improved by 3.5 per cent to trade at N82,485.74, Ripple (XRP) appreciated by 1.8 per cent to sell at N450, Binance Coin (BNB) rose by 0.7 per cent to trade at N205,719.75, while Dogecoin (DOGE) grew by 0.2 per cent to trade at N105.12.

However, Dash (DASH) went down by 1.6 per cent to sell for N80,050.10, Ethereum (ETH) depreciated by 0.5 per cent to sell at N1,896,100.03, the United States Dollar Tether moved down by 0.3 per cent to trade at N783.58, while Bitcoin (BTC) declined by 0.2 per cent to quote at N24,576,842.26.

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