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CBN Disburses N18.26bn to Five Power Companies



The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Monday commenced the disbursement of a total of N18.26 billion to five electricity distribution and generating companies as part of its N213 billion Nigerian Electricity Stabilsation Facility to the power sector.

The first beneficiaries of the special CBN power sector intervention facility include the Eko Electricity Distribution Company Plc and Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company Plc which received cheques valued at N5.16 billion and N11.36 billion respectively.

Others are the Jebba Hydroelectric Plc, Kainji Hydroelectric Plc and Shiroro Hydroelectric Plc which also received the sums of N816.83 million, N234.81 million and N678.650 million respectively.

The loan facility, which has a 10-year repayment plan, was granted at 10 per cent interest rate.

Speaking at the disbursement ceremony in Abuja, CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, commended the companies for being the first to have met “all our requirements to receive these funds.”

He said other power companies were expected to learn from the initial beneficiaries and “follow the rules as soon as possible so that we can disburse their tranche of the facility to them as well.”

Emefiele said the CBN considered NESF critical to kick start the electricity market in a way that ensured that the sector delivers tangible improvement in power supply to all Nigerians.

He added that the facility would further “reset the economics of the power sector.”

According to the CBN boss, the facility is expected to significantly address recent shortfalls in power sector revenues caused by needed adjustments in the electricity tariff and legacy gas debts.

He sad the facility would be paid back over the lifetime of a reset electricity tariff.

Emefiele, however, urged the beneficiaries to ensure that the funds are repaid as and when due and ensure that all inputs into the generation of power are ramped up in a consistent manner.

He warned that the firms must invest the funds in the necessary improvements in generation plant maintenance, transmission upgrades and distribution networks including transformers and better metering for end consumers.

Also speaking at the occasion, the Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, who commended the CBN governor for matching words with action as well as committing to the development of the sector and the economy in general, said the intervention was “something that needed to happen” to liberate the country.

He said the CBN intervention had also caused an improvement in gas tariff, providing incentives to gas producers.

He said though the target of uninterrupted power supply had not been realised,  there had been marked improvement in supply adding that this would be sustained.

Nebo said one of the goals of the federal government was to also take electricity to the rural areas.

The minister promised that the intervention would also give the consumer minimum pain in respect to tariff adjustment, stressing that the regulator would seek to protect the consumer against obscene profit from power companies.

In his remarks, on behalf of other beneficiaries, Chairman of Ibadan disco, Mr. John Ayeni, said the funds would be judiciously used to close existing gaps while Mr. Olubunmi Peters of the North South Power, owners of Shiroro, promised massive improvement in the power sector within the next two years.

  Meanwhile, Nebo has stated that vandalism of gas pipelines and inadequate metering of customers have forced the revenue that accrued to the various electricity distribution companies across the country to drop from N18 billion monthly before privatisation to N12 billion.

Speaking yesterday at a regional workshop on metering, billing and loss reduction for distribution utilities held at the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria (NAPTIN) in Lagos, the minister stated that commercial losses were still high.

Nebo said while the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) earned a monthly revenue of N18 billion, the new investors that bought the assets earned N12 billion monthly.

He further disclosed that the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) records N1.2 billion monthly as technical loss, translating to eight per cent.–This Day


WAIVER CESSATION: Igbokwe urges NIMASA to evolve stronger collaboration with Ships owners



…Stresses the need for timely disbursement of N44.6billion CVFF***

Highly revered Nigerian Maritime Lawyer, and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mike Igbokwe has urged the Nigeria Maritime Administration and safety Agency (NIMASA) to partner with ship owners and relevant association in the industry to evolving a more vibrant merchant shipping and cabotage trade regime.

Igbokwe gave the counsel during his paper presentation at the just concluded two-day stakeholders’ meeting on Cabotage waiver restrictions, organized by NIMASA.

“NIMASA and shipowners should develop merchant shipping including cabotage trade. A good start is to partner with the relevant associations in this field, such as the Nigeria Indigenous Shipowners Association (NISA), Shipowners Association of Nigeria (SOAN), Oil Trade Group & Maritime Trade Group of the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA).

“A cursory look at their vision, mission and objectives, show that they are willing to improve the maritime sector, not just for their members but for stakeholders in the maritime economy and the country”.

Adding that it is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a through briefing and regular consultation with ships owners, in other to have insight on the challenges facing the ship owners.

“It is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a thorough briefing and regular consultations with shipowners, to receive insight on the challenges they face, and how the Agency can assist in solving them and encouraging them to invest and participate in the maritime sector, for its development. 

“NIMASA should see them as partners in progress because, if they do not invest in buying ships and registering them in Nigeria, there would be no Nigerian-owned ships in its Register and NIMASA would be unable to discharge its main objective.

The Maritime lawyer also urged NIMASA  to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF)that currently stands at about N44.6 billion.

“Lest it be forgotten, what is on the lips of almost every shipowner, is the need to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (the CVFF’), which was established by the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act, 2003. It was established to promote the development of indigenous ship acquisition capacity, by providing financial assistance to Nigerian citizens and shipping companies wholly owned by Nigerian operating in the domestic coastal shipping, to purchase and maintain vessels and build shipping capacity. 

“Research shows that this fund has grown to about N44.6billion; and that due to its non-disbursement, financial institutions have repossessed some vessels, resulting in a 43% reduction of the number of operational indigenous shipping companies in Nigeria, in the past few years. 

“Without beating around the bush, to promote indigenous maritime development, prompt action must be taken by NIMASA to commence the disbursement of this Fund to qualified shipowners pursuant to the extant Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (“CVFF”) Regulations.

Mike Igbokwe (SAN)

“Indeed, as part of its statutory functions, NIMASA is to enforce and administer the provisions of the Cabotage Act 2003 and develop and implement policies and programmes which will facilitate the growth of local capacity in ownership, manning and construction of ships and other maritime infrastructure. Disbursing the CVFF is one of the ways NIMASA can fulfill this mandate.

“To assist in this task, there must be collaboration between NIMASA, financial institutions, the Minister of Transportation, as contained in the CVFF Regulations that are yet to be implemented”, the legal guru highlighted further. 

He urged the agency to create the right environment for its stakeholders to build on and engender the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders.

“Lastly, which is the main reason why we are all here, cessation of ministerial waivers on some cabotage requirements, which I believe is worth applause in favour of NIMASA. 

“This is because it appears that the readiness to obtain/grant waivers had made some of the vessels and their owners engaged in cabotage trade, to become complacent and indifferent in quickly ensuring that they updated their capacities, so as not to require the waivers. 

“The cessation of waivers is a way of forcing the relevant stakeholders of the maritime sector, to find workable solutions within, for maritime development and fill the gaps in the local capacities in 100% Nigerian crewing, ship ownership, and ship building, that had necessitated the existence of the waivers since about 15 years ago, when the Cabotage Act came into being. 

“However, NIMASA must ensure that the right environment is provided for its stakeholders to build and possess the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders. Or better still, that they are solved within the next 5 years of its intention to stop granting waivers”, he further explained. 

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Breaking News: The Funeral Rites of Matriarch C. Ogbeifun is Live



The Burial Ceremony of Engr. Greg Ogbeifun’s mother is live. Watch on the website: and on Youtube: Maritimefirst Newspaper.

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Wind Farm Vessel Collision Leaves 15 Injured



…As Valles Steamship Orders 112,000 dwt Tanker from South Korea***

A wind farm supply vessel and a cargo ship collided in the Baltic Sea on Tuesday leaving 15 injured.

The Cyprus-flagged 80-meter general cargo ship Raba collided with Denmark-flagged 31-meter wind farm supply vessel World Bora near Rügen Island, about three nautical miles off the coast of Hamburg. 

Many of those injured were service engineers on the wind farm vessel, and 10 were seriously hurt. 

They were headed to Iberdrola’s 350MW Wikinger wind farm. Nine of the people on board the World Bora were employees of Siemens Gamesa, two were employees of Iberdrola and four were crew.

The cause of the incident is not yet known, and no pollution has been reported.

After the collision, the two ships were able to proceed to Rügen under their own power, and the injured were then taken to hospital. 

Lifeboat crews from the German Maritime Search and Rescue Service tended to them prior to their transport to hospital via ambulance and helicopter.

“Iberdrola wishes to thank the rescue services for their diligence and professionalism,” the company said in a statement.

In the meantime, the Hong Kong-based shipowner Valles Steamship has ordered a new 112,000 dwt crude oil tanker from South Korea’s Sumitomo Heavy Industries Marine & Engineering.

Sumitomo is to deliver the Aframax to Valles Steamship by the end of 2020, according to data provided by Asiasis.

The newbuild Aframax will join seven other Aframaxes in Valles Steamship’s fleet. Other ships operated by the company include Panamax bulkers and medium and long range product tankers.

The company’s most-recently delivered unit is the 114,426 dwt Aframax tanker Seagalaxy. The naming and delivery of the tanker took place in February 2019, at Namura Shipbuilding’s yard in Japan.

Maritime Executive with additional report from World Maritime News

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