Buhari Canvasses $1bn Recapitalisation Of African Energy Corporation
Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, on Thursday charged the Council of Ministers of African Petroleum Producers’ Organisation to support the recapitalisation of the African Energy Investment Corporation to $1bn.
Buhari, who spoke at the extraordinary session of the council in Abuja, also said Africa had over 600 million out of the 850 million people in the world without access to modern energy.
Speaking through the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, Buhari said the need to recapitalise the corporation was part of recommendations and necessary changes submitted by the APPO secretariat to help grow the energy sector in Africa.
He said, “Among the changes introduced are the opening up of equity ownership to private and financial institutions; recapitalisation of equity to $1bn and the establishment of a new board of directors with membership from both the public and private sectors.
“In other words, the AEICORP shall not be solely owned by sovereign countries of APPO anymore. It is now to be owned by both sovereign and private investors.”
Buhari said due to the global paradigm shift from oil as energy source, investment funds were fast drying up for the oil industry.
“This is happening at a time Africa is finding more oil and gas. Without the required funds, these reserves will remain in the ground, untapped and not accessed, while our people go without energy,” Buhari said.
He added, “I need not remind you that Africa has over 600 million out of the 850 million people in the world who do not have access to modern energy.
“We need to exploit what we have to take our people out of energy poverty, and by extension economic poverty.”
The retired Major General encouraged member countries to make equity subscription to AEICORP in order to ensure consequential investment by sovereign wealth funds and national oil companies.
He said such subscription could also ensure investment by other designated organisations of existing members and non-members of APPO, African/international private banks, financial institutions and African/international private investors.
On his part, Sylva said other key decisions about APPO would be taken during the meeting.
He said, “Some of the key decisions expected to be taken at this meeting include the choice of the host country for APPO headquarters, the selection of a new secretary-general and some key officers of the APPO secretariat and the recapitalisation of African Energy Investment Corporation.”