FG Floats N1trn Firm to Tackle Infrastructure Deficit

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•Seed capital to come from CBN, NSIA, Africa Finance Corporation

Deji Elumoye in Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the establishment of Infra-Co, a Public-Private Partnership-styled infrastructure company with an initial seed capital of N1 trillion, to tackle Nigeria’s growing infrastructure deficit.

Already, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has been saddled with the responsibility of heading a Steering Committee to facilitate the take-off of the company.

Osinbajo’s Media Assistant, Laolu Akande, in a statement yesterday said with time, Infra-Co would grow to N15 trillion in assets and capital and that it would be one of the premier infrastructure finance entities in Africa to be wholly dedicated to Nigeria’s infrastructure development.

The entity, he further stressed, had been developed with concept from the National Economic Council (NEC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

According to him, the initial seed capital for the entity will come from the CBN, the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority, NSIA, and the Africa Finance Corporation.

Akande stated: “The board of Infra-Co will be chaired by the Central Bank Governor and include the Managing Director of the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority, President of the Africa Finance Corporation, as well as representatives of the Nigerian Governors Forum, and the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning. The Board will also have three independent directors from the private sector.

“To address Nigeria’s infrastructure deficit, the Buhari administration continues to explore innovative options, including through financing initiatives such as the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF), designed to cater for the second Niger Bridge, the Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria-Kano Expressway, and other projects.

“There is also the Road Infrastructure Development and Refurbishment Investment Tax Credit Scheme which is being used for the funding of the Bodo-Bonny Bridges and Road (with the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG), and the Apapa-Oshodi-Oworonshoki Expressway (with Dangote Group), among others.

“Infra-Co will finance public asset development, rehabilitation and reconstruction, as well as invest in cutting edge infrastructure projects for roads, rail, power and other key sectors.”