Chineme Okafor in Abuja
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, has advised owners in Nigeria’s electricity sector, especially in the distribution segment of the value chain, to embrace new commercial frameworks suitable for them to minimise their operational risks and grow their investments portfolios.
He said that such framework will help the operators cope optimally in the new commercial environment of the power sector, adding that it will address the problem of inadequate liquidity in the electricity industry.
A statement from the ministry of power Wednesday in Abuja stated that Fashola made this remark while receiving a delegation from the Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG) led by its Vice-Chairman, Mrs. Sola David-Borha.
He said power asset owners should be ready to bring in more funds by offering to dilute their stakes in exchange for sorely needed inputs like meters, transformers and other equipment required for systems upgrade.
He stressed that it would make more business sense for operators to give up some of their shares in exchange for funds and capital.
Fashola said if this advice is acceded to by operators, it will make for redistribution of their risk assets in exchange for equipment and capacity to drastically reduce the prevailing high occurrences of commercial and technical losses in the sector.
He further reminded operators that the success of the power privatisation exercise solely rest on the distribution end in the value-chain, hence, they should step up their collections to meet the time-lines agreed with government for all parties to respect agreements and take full responsibility for their actions.
Fashola also commended the leadership of NESG for expressing willingness to partner with his ministry in proffering solutions to the sector’s challenges through constant engagements.