FREEPRESS — The Pension Reform initiated and carried out by the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) has impacted positively on the Nigerian economy. Currently, over 6.5 million people are contributors from 180,586 employers that have registered with scheme, the Director General of BPE, Mr. Benjamin Ezra Dikki has revealed.
In addition, he said 20 Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs), seven Closed Pension Fund Administrators (CPFAs) and four Pension Fund Custodians (PFCs) have so far been registered since the scheme began in 2004.
Receiving a delegation led by the Ambassador of the European Union (EU) to Nigeria and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Mr. Michel Arrion in his office in Abuja who paid a courtesy call on Tuesday, March 10, 2015, Dikki further said that the total funds under the Contributory Pension Scheme is over N4.7 trillion. These funds have provided stable deposits, enabling banks to lend more long-term.
He said the various reforms carried out by the Bureau had impacted positively on the Nigerian economy and that the over-riding objective of the reforms is to create an enabling environment for private sector investments though Institution of sound sector policies;Liberalization of the sector by abrogating monopoly laws;Delineation of the roles of policy formulation from regulation and operations;Establishment of appropriate legal and regulatory framework;Setting up of independent regulators; and Mitigation of risks to encourage private sector investments.
The DG informed the Ambassador and his delegation that to sustain the gains of reforms, the Bureau had initiated eight more Bills which were recently transmitted to the National Assembly by the Federal Executive Council for enactment. These bills are: Railway Bill, Inland Waterways Bill, Ports and Harbour Bill, Federal Roads Authority Bill, National Roads Fund Bill, National Transport Commission Bill, Competition and Consumer Protection Bill and Postal Sector Reform Bill.
Dikki listed Housing, National Parks, Partial Privatization/Restructuring of the two Nigeria’s Development Finance Institutions (DFIs)-Bank of Industry and Bank of Agriculture, Privatization of the Nigerian Commodity Exchange and Restructuring/Commercialization of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria as some of the other initiatives the Bureau is currently prosecuting.
In his remarks, the Ambassador of the European Union (EU) to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Mr. Michel Arrion pledged to partner with the BPE in its reform program.
He said the EU team facilitates regional integration through the promotion of peace that is required for investments to thrive.
The Ambassador stated that the Union’s major areas of intervention were in Power, Agric/Food security and Water Resources and that the European Investment Bank (EIB) could assist to finance sector studies.
Arrion assured that the EU investors would be sensitised to know that Nigeria is safe investment destination.
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