BPE, NSE to Define Terms for Listing Privatised Firms on Bourse

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By Chineme Okafor in Abuja

The Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) and Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE) will define the modalities for the listing of privatised government firms on the capital market, the Director General of BPE, Mr. Alex Okoh, has disclosed.

Okoh said yesterday in a statement by the Head of Public Communication of the BPE, Mr. Chukwuma Nwokoh, that the structure of the reform and privatisation process by the BPE already envisaged the listing of privatised enterprises as the final outcome of the exercise.

He reportedly told members of the NSE’s technical committee on attraction of new listings to the capital market which is chaired by Haruna Jallo Waziri, an executive director at the NSE, at a meeting in Abuja that this would eventually happen but that conditions for the listings would also have to be defined.

Okoh’s disclosure that the listing on the stock exchange of shares of privatised government companies thus confirms THISDAY’s recent report from the federal government’s power sector recovery programme, that the BPE and Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) would soon be asked by the government to get the electricity distribution companies (Discos) to quickly list their shares on the stock exchange to enable them raise capital to fund their operations.

Apart from the electricity Discos, there are also other privatised government’s firms in other sectors of the Nigerian economy that would be asked to list their shares in the stock exchange.

Okoh, however pledged that the BPE would initiate a strong collaboration with the capital market and help deepen its operations. He added: “We will collaborate in reviewing what the conditions are and try to make it right for the listings.”

He equally raised concerns about the stability of the capital market and prospects of getting good value should the privatised entities be listed.

Similarly, in his remarks, Waziri pointed out that they have engaged trade groups, regulators and quasi-regulators to actualise their mandate on this.

He noted that apart from creating efficiency, privatisation was a catalyst for economic growth, in addition to fostering economic inclusiveness amongst the populace.

Privatisation, Waziri explained, often increase the velocity of the capital market, which he added ha an existing depth and capacity yet to be explored.