By Kunle Adeliyi.
The Nigerian Government has taken another bold step to address the nation’s infrastructure deficit with the establishment of a Public Private Partnership styled Infrastructure Company- Infra-Co.
A statement by Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Office of the Vice President stated that the company would be one of the premier Infrastructure finance entities in Africa and will be wholly dedicated to Nigeria’s Infrastructure development.
It added that the President had asked Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, to chair a steering committee tasked with setting up the company.
According to the statement, the initial seed capital for the entity will come from the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), and the Africa Finance Corporation, while the board 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, with three independent directors from the private sector.
The statement further explained that the Buhari Administration will continue to explore innovative options to address the nation’s infrastructure deficit, observing that financing initiatives such as the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) is designed to cater for the 2nd 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 Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG), and the Apapa-oshodi-Oworonsoki Expressway (with Dangote Group), among others.
Infra-Co will finance public assets development, rehabilitation and reconstruction as well as invest in cutting edge Infrastructure projects for Roads, Rail, Power and other key sectors.
Its initial seed capital is N1 Trillion and it is envisaged that, over time, the entity will grow to N15 Trillion in assets and capital.