FG rakes N1trn from privatisation  * Targets N493bn revenue this year

By Favour Nnabugwu



The federal government has generated a whopping the sum of N1trillion from proceeds of the privatisation of public enterprises even as it Target N493 billion this year.

The Director-General of the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Mr. Alex Okoh, made during the 2021 Work Plan of the agency, in Abuja.

Okoh while speaking yesterday said, “The revenue was generated from the privatisation of 234 entities, in the last two decades.

The privatised enterprises, he said, cut across several sectors including agriculture,  banking and insurance,  hospitality,  industry and manufacturing,  oil and gas,  power, port, mines and steel, automobile, paper and packaging,  as well as, telecommunications.

On why refineries were removed from the list of entities listed for privatisation this year, the D-G said that BPE’s intention was sell them “as is” but that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation thought otherwise.

“Our initial plan was to privatise the refineries without putting more money. But the NNPC believes the plants can be rehabilitated and secured government approval to go ahead with the rehabilitation. That is why we have flagged it.”

The BPE DG gave a list of entities to be privatised to include: Afam Power, Yola Disco (which is almost completed), Aluminium Smelter Company of Nigeria in Ikot-Abasi of Akwa Ibom State, Bank of Agriculture , as well as, the sale of Nigerian Minning Corporation’ Mineral House in Ikeja, Lagos.

Others according to would include: Lagos International Trade Fair Complex, Tafawa Balewa Square, River Basin Development Authorities, as well as, the reform of the Housing sector under which the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria would be restructured,  recapitalised and commercialised.

Talking on the complex issues faced by  Ajaokuta Steel Company, the legal issues around it would soon be resolved with a view to urgently  completing all that were required to make it operational.

He stressed that Nigeria’s dream of becoming an industrialised nation would be a mirage unless the steel industry was fixed.

He stated that about N 493. 404 billion was expected from the sales of Public enterprises this year, alone, if the 2021 Work Plan is executed successfully.

He said, “Revenue projections in the year would involve 36 projects with expected income  of N496. 848 billion, out of which about N 3.344 billion would be expenditure.

The privatisation of the five National Integrated Power Plants (NIPPs) located in Benin, Calabar, Geregu, Olorunsogo and Omotosho would be completed, latest,  December this year and expected to yield significant revenue for the three tiers of government, as funds used in constructing them were sourced from the Excess Crude Account under the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Okoh explained that there were no plans to sell the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).

“The intention of government remained working towards making it more effective through injection of private capital, through concession of portions of the network, since it has been identified as the weak link between Power generation and distribution.

The D-G added that contrary to claims by some Power Distribution Companies (Discos),  the federal government has been providing every necessary support for them, in line with its 40 per cent stake.

He stated, “The core investors in the Discos have not brought in their own funds other than the payment made for their stakes in the companies, whereas the federal government, through its agencies, especially the Central Bank of Nigeria,  has provided various funds to enable them operate more efficiently.

On the Paper industry, the BPE boss revealed that an inter-ministerial committee had been set up to undertake a holistic review of all moribund paper companies that had

Cyber insurance premium to reach $9bn in 2021

By Favour Nnabugwu




The global cyber insurance premiums are forecast to increase by a further 27 percent in 2021 to reach almost $9bn of gross written premium.

The cyber unsurance grew by 34 percent last year after slow growth of just 4% in 2019, with gross written premiums topping $7bn in 2020

Strong double-digit premium increases will drive the cyber insurance market to $20.6bn by 2025, GlobalData says, adding that the market is expected to “thrive” after Covid-19 as demand takes off.

“Cybersecurity was thrust into the spotlight in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic forced businesses to digitalise their processes and adopt remote working practices overnight,” GlobalData states.

It adds that cybercriminals were quick to exploit global panic and highlighted the need for businesses to have insurance protection in place.

“But the market is not as easy to navigate as it once was,” GlobalData says. Up to now, buyers have had the pick of the market as new capacity clamoured for business, coupled with flat rates and high levels of cover.

But GlobalData says the market has fundamentally changed in the aftermath of Covid-19, along with the associated increase in cyber risks and exposure to large losses.

Ben Carey-Evans, insurance analyst at GlobalData, commented: “Covid-19 has also brought about a permanent shift in the way businesses and consumers operate, with remote working practices set to stay and digital consumer channels seeing more use than before the pandemic.

This lasting shift in behaviour will push the demand for both commercial cyber insurance and, to a lesser extent, personal cyber insurance in the coming years.”

Today’s buyers are facing tighter restrictions on cyber cover and higher premium rates, but Mr Carey-Evans said the cyber insurance market is expected to continue on a strong growth trajectory during the next five years.

“The need for robust cybersecurity and cyber insurance is becoming apparent to businesses of all types and sizes, as the frequency and severity of cyberattacks continues to rise,” he said.

African Alliance’s business continuity sustains through Covid-19

By Favour Nnabugwu


The management of African Alliance Insurance Plc said the business continuity management process in place sustain the company even in the heat of Covid-19.

Managing Director of the company, Mrs. Joyce Ojemudia revealed this at the recent Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the National Association of Insurance and Pension Correspondents(NAIPCO), in which African Alliance sponsored, in Lagos last weekend.

Represented by the company’s Head of Marketing, Mr. Emmanuel Eburajolo, at the AGM, Ojemudia stated that, “Covid-19 came unexpectedly, with a lot of challenges and many companies were caught unaware.

However, in African Alliance, the impact was minimal because we already had a Business Continuity Management process in place, so, the company was prepared.

“We had a process that was digitally enabled and this aided the smooth continuation of our business and services with customers even when some companies were still grappling with the situation and trying to find their feet.”

The insurer’s boss, however, urged the media to collaborate with the insurance industry for enhanced insurance awareness in Nigeria.

According to her, “We all agree you are the loudspeakers of our industry. Without you, whatever goes on in our industry would go largely unnoticed and unreported, pretty much like someone winking in the dark”

“But this is not an easy task, being gatekeepers for an industry that is older than Nigeria as we know it, with various interests and mindsets.

However, someone has to do it, and I daresay you are doing very well. But can we do better? Yes we can. Even the best of outcomes can get better.”