The umbrella body of the 11 electricity distribution companies (Discos), Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED) has said about N152.16billion of the N201.61billion Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) loan reflecting on Distribution Companies (Discos) accounts, has blocked access to funding from commercial banks, Tribune reports.
This was disclosed by ANED’s director of research and advocacy, Barrister Sunday Olurotimi Oduntan, in Abuja. According to him, the loan tagged, Nigeria Electricity Market Stabilisation Fund (NEMSF) was to pay for gas and other legacy debts incurred before private investors took over PHCN assets on November 1, 2013. The breakdown shows that only N58.45bn (about 27.8 per cent) was designated for the DisCos while the balance of N152.16billion (72.3 per cent) was for the Generation Companies (GenCos), gas suppliers and other service providers. It would be payable in bits during a 10 year period by the beneficiaries.
Oduntan said only N49 billion has been received by some DisCos out of the N120bn the CBN had disbursed since it commenced in 2015. He however lamented that although the N152bn balance was not for the DisCos, the financial books of the electricity retailers bear the debt burden. “The debt encumbrance is a significant impediment to the DisCos’ ability to borrow money to finance their capital investment, and their financing of the entire value chain,” Oduntan explained in a statement.
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