Cash crunch: AMCON plans to lease seized properties
The Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, the bad debt manager set up in the wake of the banking sector crisis in 2009 by the Federal Government, says it may lease out properties seized from companies that are failing to repay loans as it grapples with its own cash crunch.
The Chief Executive Officer, AMCON, Mr. Ahmed kuru, said the corporation might introduce the “real-estate investment scheme” by the end of the year to raise money to meet its bond repayments.
According to him, AMCON is planning to sell the properties when the economy improves and the assets can attract fair value.
Kuru said the agency was confiscating more assets than it was receiving from its recovery efforts as businesses battle to sell products and generate cash, according to Bloomberg report.
Companies that owe AMCON are struggling to meet their debts’ repayments as the economy heads for a recession due to the global slump in crude oil prices and a 15-month currency peg introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria that crippled foreign-exchange supplies.
AMCON, the CEO said, had no plans for another rescue package for banks and was focused on how it would repay N5.2tn of outstanding bonds over the next nine years.
The corporation had purchased about 14,000 non-performing loans at a cost of N3.9tn in a Federal Government-led bailout of 10 companies following the 2009 banking crisis.
Kuru said, “We are in the second phase, which is redemption of our debts, not bailing out banks. We are not in the perpetual business of bailing out banks.’’
He said the sale of Keystone Bank, the biggest of the three banks nationalised after the 2009 crisis, was already at the final state and would probably be sold this quarter.
He added, “Our activity here is directly linked to the economy. The combination of the economy picking up for the banks and also for the obligors will help AMCON meet its objectives and wind down in 2023 as planned.”