Technical team validates Nigeria’s bid to host $5bn AEB Headquarters

Amb. Nicholas Ella, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources
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By Emmanuella Anokam

A Joint Technical Inspection Team has validated Nigeria’s readiness to host the headquarters of the five billion dollars African Energy Bank (AEB) in the country.

The AEB is set to be established in Nigeria in July 2024.

The technical inspection team is from the African Petroleum Producers Organisation (APPO) and Afrexim Bank- the joint promoters for the Establishment of the African Energy Bank.

This is contained in a statement by Amb. Nicholas Ella, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, on Friday in Abuja.

Sequel to the first bidding round in early 2024, Nigeria, Ghana, Benin and Algeria pre-qualified to proceed to the final round of the exercise.

These countries will compete for the right to host the Supranational Multilateral five billion dollars bank, to stimulate financing of the Africa’s hydrocarbon deposits of oil, gas and condensates, support energy transition and net zero 2060 commitments.

Ella said in its preparation for the bid, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources sought and obtained expert opinions from the Federal Ministry of Justice and consultants in January 2024.

“They reviewed and approved the Bank’s proposed Charter Establishment Agreement, the Treaty and Headquarters Host Agreement. This approval provided the impetus to proceed, and the Federal Executive Council and National Assembly are currently finalising the ratification process.

“This will ensure that the AEB receives the necessary privileges and immunities to operate in line with its global vision.

“To demonstrate the country’s commitment, Nigeria has identified a prestigious building in Abuja for the temporary headquarters and opened a secured data room for the technical team’s review.

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“The application form for land for the permanent headquarters in the Central Business District of Abuja has been submitted for approval,” Ellz said.

He said that President Bola Tinubu had approved 100 million dollars investment from four Agencies of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, exceeding the minimum equity requirement of 83.33 million dollars for class A shares.

This decision, he said positioned Nigeria favourably to win the bid, potentially reshaping the country’s oil and gas ecosystem.

According to Ella, Nigeria is working diligently through the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd.), and the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB), to meet all eligibility criteria.

He said the five billion dollars bank, when headquartered in Nigeria, shall be the largest single Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflow into Nigeria in over two decades with its numerous benefits.

“The Africa Energy Bank ecosystem shall rank as the third largest bank in Africa and shall be the most prominent bank in Nigeria in terms of shareholders’ funds.

“It will significantly boost Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product, Employment, Financial Architecture and Inclusion, and propel our economic diversification while supporting foreign exchange management strategies.

“It will pivot exploration and investment initiatives by our Independent Petroleum Producers, commercial service providers, legal and local content drivers, and technology and skills development that will leverage the bank’s proximity to the market and scale up production.

“The five billion dollars AEB is expected to grow its assets to over 120 billion dollars in seven years, thus becoming a source of sustainable FDI for Nigeria that supports our vision 2030 ambitions,” he said.

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The bank upon take-off is expected to attract an additional two billion dollars equity in classes B and C from African Sovereign wealth funds, national oil companies, and other institutional investors whose investment objectives are aligned with the vision and mission of the bank.

Afrexim-Bank board has committed to invest 1.250 billion dollars, as a major investor in class A shares alongside the APPO members club. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)

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Edited by Rabiu Sani Ali

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