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Free trade zones, power generation assets… BPE lists 36 projects for concession this year

Free trade zones, power generation assets… BPE lists 36 projects for concession this year
July 14
08:51 2021

Alex Okoh, director-general of the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), says the agency has listed over 36 projects and transactions for concession this year across diverse sectors of the economy, including the power sector.

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He said projects include the planned concession of two free trade zones located in Calabar and Kano.

Last month, Okoh had said Nigeria’s free trade zones, if well harnessed, could bring in foreign direct investment and manufacturing inflows like China.

During his opening remarks at the investors’ webinar, organised by the BPE, in collaboration with the Nigerian Exchange Group and the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC) on Tuesday, Okoh said the planned concession would generate annual savings of N5 billion into the federal treasury.

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The BPE boss added that the planned concession would increase export earnings from the two special economic zones to about $3 billion between five to seven years.

Okoh explained that these transactions and projects would see the sale and concession of power generation assets that would add about 3,300 megawatts to the national grid.

“The importance of power as an enabler for the economy and industrial activities across all sectors of the economy continues to attract strong focus and attention of the Federal Government,” he said.

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“In the health sector, the reforms being undertaken by the bureau will involve the implementation of initiatives which will radically transform health care delivery across Nigeria.

“This will improve availability, accessibility, affordability and quality of health care services with the ultimate objective of having a physically and an emotionally healthy population.

“The impact of this is to unlock significant resources for the government to invest in other critical infrastructure as well as other key sectors of the economy creating job opportunities in the process.”

He also reiterated the government’s readiness to improve its PPP engagement framework to generate the confidence required to attract private sector capital into the nation’s infrastructure space.

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Okoh said the webinar was organised to highlight investment opportunities offered by the government reforms and privatisation programme as captured in the bureau’s 2021 work plan.

Also speaking, Zainab Ahmed, minister of finance, budget and national planning, said Nigeria remained an economic hub in the African continent that is quite attractive, due to its population.

“It is, indeed, an investor’s delight despite our numerous challenges which the government is confronting, Nigeria remains a premium investment destination for both local and foreign investors in the African continent,” she said.

“As we all know, there is a direct correlation between risk and reward, the higher the risk, the higher the associated reward.

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“The commitment of this administration under the leadership of his excellence Buhari was to have and to ensure that there is a decent and living standards for Nigerians to stimulate economic growth and to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty over the next 10 years.”

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