By Etuka Sunday
Private sector activities have been described as key drivers for economic growth and development as they create jobs and pay the taxes that finance services and investments.
This was stated by Acting Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk during the inauguration of the SEC Private Equity Committee in Abuja, weekend.
Uduk who was represented by Acting Executive Commissioner Corporate Services of the SEC, Mr. Henry Rowlands, said the inauguration of the SEC Private Equity Committee is ahead of the planned National Private Equity Summit.
Uduk said the event is an epoch making one for the country as it underscores one of its objectives of facilitating proper understanding and appreciation by government of the importance of private sector activities as key drivers of private sector led economic growth.
She said the Nigerian government recognises the importance of private sector-led economic growth, hence it has put in place several partnerships and initiatives between the private sector and the government with a view to achieving optimal economic growth.
According to her, “The private sector remains the key driver of economic growth with the federal government providing enabling framework to galvanise and support private sector investors and participants through such vehicle as private equity funds.
“A McKinsey report highlights this fact by its data that reveals that private equity net assets grew as much as 70% from 2002 till 2018 and twice as fast as public equities. This underscores the high growth rate of private sector investment through private equity funds operations” she stated.
The Acting DG said that with a provision for allocation of $250 million of the pension assets under management of private equity investment, there lies huge potential for the sector to drive economic growth potentials of the Nigerian economy.
“I seize this opportunity to sincerely appreciate Henshaw Capital and Partners for this initiative and all the institutions and agencies that have accepted to participate in this working committee” Uduk added.
In his remarks, Mr. Efiok Ekpenyong Efiok, Head, Investment Management Department, SEC said the SEC Private Equity Committee is a SEC driven Committee based on Private sector initiative led by Henshaw Capital Partners in collaboration with key financial sector stakeholders, Federal Government and private sector Institutions.
Efiok said the institutions include Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigerian Sovereign Wealth Fund, National Pensions Commission, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), and Nigerian Association of Securities Dealers.
According to Efiok, the work of the Committee is geared towards organizing the Nigerian Private Equity summit with the objective of galvanizing the private equity ecosystem in Nigeria to proactively articulate, expand and harness the private equity opportunity in Nigeria.
“In line with this principal objective as articulated in the proposal document, the Summit aims among others to raise awareness of the private equity opportunity to meet a significant portion of the financing needs of Nigeria’s exponential growth Companies,” he added.