Udoma: Capacity Gaps in MDAs, Hindrance to Govt’s Maximum Benefits from PPPs

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Ndubuisi Francis in Abuja
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, has stated that capacity gaps in Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) hinder the government from deriving maximum benefits from partnerships with the private sector in infrastructure  delivery.

He regretted that currently, there are capacity gaps in the MDAs that hinder government from deriving maximum benefits from partnerships with the private sector.
The minister declared that bankable projects are required to attract private sector investment in infrastructure.

Udoma stated that in attracting private investment, preparing and packaging bankable projects were desirable, arguing that doing so called  for time, money and technical know-how.
He spoke at a one-day workshop in Abuja organised by his ministry in collaboration with The Infrastructure Bank (TIB).

The workshop was organised in a bid to achieve increased private sector investment in infrastructure and reduction of inadequate capacity in the MDAs to package potential bankable infrastructure projects.

The minister, who was represented by the Director of Administration in the ministry,  Mr. Chris Ezeilo, stated that MDAs must have officers that possess adequate knowledge and skills in different areas of public-private-partnership (PPP) competencies, including feasibility studies, financial restructuring, procurements, contractual agreements, and environmental impact assessment.

“Currently, there are capacity gaps in the MDAs that hinder government from deriving maximum benefits from partnerships with the private sector in infrastructure delivery,’’ he said.
He said the National Integrated Infrastructure Master Plan (NIIMP) recognises the critical role of private sector in the financing and delivery of priority projects estimating an investment requirement of $166 billion for the first five years, out of which 48 per cent of this amount is expected to be provided by the private sector.

According to a statement issued by the  Assistant Director (Press),
Salish Haiba, the Managing Director/CEO of TIB, Mr. Adekunle Oyinloye,  investment in capital infrastructure and public utilities has been recognised as a reliable way to rescue the nation from the current economic recession threatening to hamper the country’s development.

He stated that NIIMP stipulates that Nigeria needs an average of $25 billion per annum for the next five years to sustain a robust economic growth.

Oyinloye said the private sector remains willing to work with the government in strategic ways to fund the infrastructure deficit through adroit transaction structuring that comprehensively addresses the project risks faced by promoters, as well as assuring the return on and of capital invested.