Nigeria’s Federal Government has appointed KPMG, auditors and tax advisers, as transaction advisers for the N15Trillion Infrastructure Corporation (InfraCorp), now scheduled to take off by the third quarter of this year. InfraCorp, expected to help close the country’s huge infrastructure gap, is being put together by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) and the African Finance Corporation (AFC), will not only unlock investments from local sources but also attract foreign private capital into the infrastructure space.
The CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, who gave the updates during a virtual investors’ webinar organised by the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), said authorities were pushing for InfraCorp because the government’s lean resources would hardly be enough to support infrastructure building in Africa’s largest economy. It is estimated that Nigeria would need over N350 Trillion to support infrastructure investment over the next 10 years.
Analysts believe that if these investments are made, Nigeria would likely gain GDP growth rates of over 10 percent annually. “But given the revenue position of the government, it will be difficult to support these investments using government revenue,” Emefiele said, saying harnessing available funds from the private sector is therefore vital for the infrastructure funding objectives to be met.
According to Emefiele, “This would however require viable public partnership arrangements that provide investors with bankable projects that are socially and economically beneficial while offering decent returns to investors. “It is as a result of this position, that the CBN, working with key stakeholders such as the AFC and the NSIA secured the support of Mr. President in setting up InfraCorp, which is an entity that will seek to raise private sector capital to support investments in key infrastructure in Nigeria.”
The establishment of InfraCorp has generated a lot of interest from both local and international private sector fund managers who are keen to work with the promoters in deploying the much needed private sector capital, he said. “Work has indeed attained an advanced stage and we have received the approval of the chairman of the Steering Committee, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, for the appointment of KPMG as the transaction advisers.
“Also, only recently we obtained approval from asset managers. So, following the conclusion of these arrangements and other activities, I would like to assure us that InfraCorp is expected to begin full operation by the third quarter of 2021. “We believe that through a partnership with the private sector, InfraCorp will be able to leverage close to N15 Trillion over the coming years, which would help to close the gap on our infrastructure funding needs and would help to catalyse growth in other key sectors of our economy,” the CBN governor stated. He also told the over 800 webinar participants that investment in the country’s rail and road infrastructure, power, manufacturing, ICT and agriculture were profitable choices, and areas with significant potential to transform the growth trajectory of our country.
Alex Okoh, director-general, BPE, said over the years, the Bureau had reformed over 234 state-owned enterprises and assets cutting across various sectors of the economy – banking, insurance, oil and gas, seaports and of course power. He said the investors’ webinar was aimed at highlighting the huge investment opportunities being offered by the government’s reform and privatisation programme as captured in the Bureau’s 2021 Work Plan, which has over 36 projects and transactions across diverse sectors of the economy listed in it.
Oscar Onyema, Group CEO, Nigerian Exchange Group, who spoke on unlocking investment opportunities in Nigeria, said getting private participation in the public space adds significant value to various sectors of the economy.
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