Lagos, Nigeria – Nigerian banks have so far disbursed 109.3 billion naira (US$684.5 million) from the Power and Airlines Intervention Fund to boost power supply in the country, according to Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi.
The local media Tuesday quoted Mr. Sanusi as saying 11 banks disbursed the money from the 300 billion naira (US$1.8 billion) intervention fund provided by the apex bank in 2010.
“This is to fast track the development of electric power projects through the provision of the much needed long-tenor, fixed interest funds to catalyse private sector investments in the power sector,” the CBN Governor said.
He said the 109.3 billion naira had been disbursed to 20 companies as at 30 Sept. 2013, adding that the fund has, among others, financed the construction of 125-kilometre gas-to-power pipeline and the generation of about 800 Mega Watts of electricity, mostly by manufacturing companies.
Mr. Sanusi said the power sector privatisation was a critical component of the government’s Transformation Agenda, and that the central bank was playing a prominent role to ensure its success.
The government has said the ongoing privatisation in the sector will help solve the persistent power shortage in Africa’s most populous country, which currently generates just about 4,000MW, considered to be largely inadequate to meet demands.