Business - Business & Economy - Energy - News - August 19, 2022

Unbundling of TCN under way, says BPE

By Bassey Udo

The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) is to be unbundled into several companies for better efficiency, the Director General of the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Alex Okoh, has said.

Okoh, who announced this in Abuja while receiving a delegation from Jindal Steel & Power Group, an Indian mines and steel firm, said the exercise would make the TCN more functional and efficient.

Okoh said despite the unbundling of the power sector by the Federal Government in 2013 into successor companies, consisting 11 power distribution companies (DISCOs) and six generation companies (GENCOs), the TCN has remained as one entity operated by the Federal Government.

He said the time has come for the company to be unbundled and broken into different companies to ensure it delivered its mandate better.

Okoh did not give further details of the plans he said were under way to unbundle the TCN for more efficiency.

However, the DG said the reform, concession and privatisation agency would collaborate with Jindal Steel & Power Group, reputed to exist a leading world player in Steel, Mines and Infrastructure industry in its areas of interest to invest in Nigeria.

Consequently, Okoh said a joint committee to work out the modalities for the collaboration was constituted, with the Director, Industries and Services at the BPE, the Yunana Jackdel Malo heading the BPE’s team, while Mukesh Sharma would head the Jindal Steel & Power Group’s team.

Okoh told delegation from the Jindal Steel & Power Group, led by its Vice Chairman, V. R. Sharma, that there were a lot of potentials and opportunities in the country in areas of interest for the group.

He cited, among others, the planned concession of the Zungeru Power Plant, which has the capacity to generate about 700 megawatts (MW) when operational, adding that already, the Federal Government had procured the services of a Transaction Adviser for its eventual concession.

The DG disclosed that the planned concession of the Zungeru Dam would be modelled after Kainji and Jebba Dams’ concession, noting that the successful concessionaire would handle it for a period of 30 years.

Okoh identified steel as another area of interest for the group, noting that though the three Steel Rolling Companies in the country, namely Jos, Katsina and Osogbo had been privatised, they were not living up to expectation.

He said the Federal Government would support any effort by any investor to rev up the sector productivity and efficiency.

Also, Okoh informed the investors that power, which was their main stronghold, has openings in the country, as the Federal Government was at the verge of privatising five of its ten National Integrated Power Plants (NIPPs), which have the combined capacity to generate between 2,300 and 2,500 megawatts.

Earlier, the Vice Chairman of the Group, V. R. Sharma, said the visit by the delegation was to afford the group the opportunity to have firsthand information on areas of investment in Nigeria.

Nigeria, he said, was the largest economy in Africa, which his group intends to cash in on the vast potentials to invest in Mines, Hydro Power and other areas of interest.

The Group was accompanied on the courtesy visit by Ambassador Ahmed Sule, Nigeria’s High Commissioner Accredited to Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri-Lanka.

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