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Govt moves to remodel transmission firm, asks Discos to address liquidity challenge

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 Babatunde Fashola

Babatunde Fashola

Mindful of the myriad of challenges besetting the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, yesterday hinted of plans to remodel the firm.

He noted that government was working on a modular model for the proposed reform of the transmission grid, stressing that the nation’s network must be rejigged to attract more private sector participants.

Also yesterday, Fashola charged distribution companies (Discos) to source for funds with a view addressing the liquidity challenge in the electricity distribution sub-sector of the industry.

To this end, he counselled owners of the power firms to consider some kind of equity sharing with new investors.

Fashola, who spoke when he received a team from the Nigerian 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, insisting that it would make more business sense to give up some shares in exchange for capital.

The minister noted that the move would make for redistribution of operators’ risk assets in exchange for equipment and capacity to drastically reduce the prevailing high occurrences of commercial and technical losses.

He further reminded the power asset owners that the success of the privatisation exercise solely rests on the distribution end in the value-chain, hence the need to step up their collections so as to meet the timelines agreed with government.

Fashola commended the leadership of NESG for expressing its willingness to partner with his ministry in proffering solutions through constant engagements.

Earlier, David-Borha appealed to the minister to assist in the area of enabling legislation that would reduce conflict in the course of implementing projects conceived under private public partnership.

She also asked government to tackle some critical roads that would guarantee traffic flow, which she noted, had been a major concern for investors.


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