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SIGA hints of recapitalising potential profitable SOEs

The State Interest and Governance Authority (SIGA) has said it was exploring a number of ways to recapitalise some distressed State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) and entities that have the potential to become profitable.

The cocktail of measures according to SIGA included, but not limited to diversifying on the stock market, but also accessing Foreign Direct Investor (FDI) and possibly local investment to recapitalise a number of these distressed entities.

“In terms of recapitalisation, we are also talking to the Ghana Stock Exchange. They believe that some of our distressed entities have the commercial potential that they can help capitalise, so we are working with them and have sent a memo to cabinet for the consideration of the President and his team,” he said.

The Director-General of SIGA, Mr Edward Boateng, disclosed to the media in Accra yesterday when his outfit took its turn at the State of the Agencies Report, organised by the Ministry of Information in collaboration with SIGA.

It is a platform created to enable State Owned Enterprises and entities tell their success stories to the Ghanaian public over the last six years.

Mr Boateng said he was expectant the memo submitted to cabinet would yield the necessary results that would enable SIGA commence with the recapitalisation agenda of some of the entities.

“When it comes back you’ll see some action in that regard, hopefully next year where some of our entities will be recapitalised with the GSE,” he said.

The Director-General said apart from exploring the option of recapitalising the entities through the GSE, SIGA was also looking for both local and international partners for some of the entities to be recapitalized by them.

“Now in terms of governance, when new capital comes into businesses, it comes with new set of rules and regulations, and the stock exchange would not put money into activities that were poorly managed. That will have to change,” he stressed.

Mr Boateng, who is also the former Ghana Ambassador to China, said SIGA was working on ensuring efficient corporate governance at these entities, and whether we put money in or not, we expect that they are properly and efficiently governed.

He noted that SIGA, although created about three years ago, was working to secure its mandate and also position it as efficient and excellent entity, and demands same from entities under its watch.

He noted that per the act established by SIGA, Act 990, about 175 SOEs and entities were under its watch, and expected to work to become profitable and pay dividends to the government.

He said in 2020 about 65 of these entities were supposed to have paid dividends to the government, however about five per cent paid their dividends.

He said as part of their mandate, they were to promote the efficient or where applicable profitable operations of specified entities, oversee and administer the interests of the State in specified entities, enforce compliance of good corporate governance and higher standard of excellence, and it was working towards achieving it.

“Our mandate also includes acquiring, receiving, holding and administering or disposing of shares of the State in state owned-enterprises and joint-venture companies.”

Mr Boateng said SIGA would not hesitate to recommend to government to diversify its interest in entities that were not living up to their mandate, thus non-profitable.

BY CLIFF EKUFUL

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