The Kogi state government has said is considering “divesting from business ventures”, saying its responsibility is to create an enabling environment for businesses to flourish.
This position was made known in Lokoja, the state capital on Wednesday, by the state’s Commissioner for Information and Communications, Mr Kingsley Fanwo.
According to him, the state government is “evolving a policy to systematically ease herself out of business ventures that are not critical needs of the people and which could be better managed by the private sector.”
He said: “The present administration is working on a plan to concentrate on infrastructural development and create a conducive environment for businesses to thrive.
“Over the years, certain businesses such as Hotel Management and Transportation have been mismanaged by Government. This administration will not follow that path.
“The Economic Team of Government has been charged to come up with plan that will gradually cede the major economic play to the private sector while Government concentrates on regulating the economy and also creates a conducive environment for economic prosperity.
“Businesses like Hotel Management and Transportation and others in that belt, are better managed by the private sector. Government has no more resources to waste on businesses rendering services that are better rendered by private concerns.
The Commissioner said government may also consider raising capital for infrastructural development from “non-performing assets of the state.
“We are looking at the assets of the State. There are some assets that government kept spending huge sums to maintain and they are not bringing any income to the state. “The economic reality of today means that we have to reorder our priorities and look into how we can complete our ongoing projects as well as initiate new impact ones.
“Economically, the world is going through a new normal and smart states like ours will have to cut costs and recharge our revenue generating batteries to ensure our people are served and served well”.
He said all government activities in this regard will be “transparent, fair and in the best interest of the good people of Kogi state, assuring the people of government’s commitment to improving infrastructure and stimulate the economy of the state.