The National Council on Privatisation (NCP) has approved the guidelines for the sale of the Federal Government shares in Nigeria Unity Line (NUL).
The Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) said NCP, under the leadership of its Chairman and Vice president, Namadi Sambo, directs that the sale be carried out through strategic investor sales.
Though the NUL was privatised since December 2, 2005 to Seaforce Shipping Company Limited with a bid price of $20 million, the transaction failed to materialise following the failure of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to carry out a presidential directive that the investor be allowed to lift 40 percent of crude from its facility.
However, with the passage of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Act 2007 and the Local Content Act 2011, the stage appears set for some value to be added to the NUL, particularly with the provision of the necessary institutional framework to enforce compliance with extant laws.
The BPE, which has consistently ensured that NUL’s license was renewed in order to maintain its local and international relevance, said some prospective investors have continued to show interest in NUL, particularly as there are no outstanding liabilities to worry about.NUL, incorporated on January23rd, 1995, commencing operations in July 1996, is a public limited liability company wholly owned by the Federal Government through NIMASA.
The firm was incorporated to serve as a model shipping line for the Nigerian maritime industry and to optimally exploit the extensive opportunities for the bulk carriage of dry and wet cargo, including the freighting of crude oil and refined petroleum products.In a related development, the NCP has approved about N127million as the accrued payment to the staff of Skypower Aviation Handling Company (SAHCOL) from January 2002 to April 2003 due to changes in their salary structure as a result of increment in transport and housing for the period.
The additional payment was verified by an ad hoc committee set up by the Sub- Committee on Transportation, Manufacturing & Services of the Technical Committee of NCP, while the full and final payment to the affected staff would be made by the liquidator from the proceeds of the liquidation.
The NCP also directed that the net proceeds from the liquidation of SAHCOL of about N99milion be retrieved from the liquidator and paid into the Privatisation Proceeds Account (PPA.)