By Bassey Udo
The total recoveries by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) since its inception in 2010 till December 2017 rose to over N731 billion, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the agency, Ahmed Kuru, said on Thursday.
Mr Kuru who disclosed this in a statement sent to PREMIUM TIMES by the spokesperson of AMCON, Jude Nwauzor, said a bulk of the recoveries were in form of assets, with properties value accounting for about 35 per cent of the amount.
However, Mr Kuru expressed disappointment over the increasing decline in the corporation's ability to dispose of assets at competitive market rates due to the several factors, including inflation among other market dynamics.
He said with such challenges, AMCON was seeking innovative ways of converting its huge portfolio of assets into liquid cash as quickly as possible, as it cannot afford to continue business as usual.
"We have convened a forum for some of the most resourceful real estate professionals and legal experts to help brainstorm through the issues and proffer practical solutions to the challenges confronting AMCON," he said.
"We have also invited critical regulatory stakeholders to contribute to the discourse toward finding workable solutions."
Mr. Kuru said AMCON has restructured its internal processes in anticipation of better outcomes in its asset resolution operations.
He was speaking at the opening of a two-day Asset Sales Strategy Retreat, in Abuja, which ended on Thursday.
Represented by the Executive Director in charge of Operations, Aminu Ismail, the AMCON boss said part of the new strategy would be to expand the scope of its sales by engaging professionals from the real estate sector.
The professionals would include legal experts and regulatory stakeholders, who would be challenged to share ideas on better measures AMCON should adopt in disposing its huge assets at good value and in good time in line with corporation's mandate.
One of the key objectives of AMCON, he noted, is to obtain the best achievable financial returns for all assets acquired.
Following the acquisition of Eligible Bank Assets (EBAs), AMCON is now responsible for recovering the bad loans either through cash repayments or asset forfeitures/foreclosures.
Considering AMCON's obligations to the Central Bank Nigeria (CBN) to make cash repayment, Mr Kuru said AMCON has the responsibility of converting the assets into cash to meet that obligation.
The Executive Director in charge of Asset Management at AMCON, Eberechukwu Uneze, who also chaired the plenary session at the retreat, said there was a dire need for professionals, experts and agencies to collaborate with AMCON to play its role.
Mr Uneze said the corporation would require these collaborations to dispose a stockpile of assets it has been finding it difficult to dispose in the regular open market.
These assets, he said, cut across critical sectors of the economy, namely real estate, energy, transportation and aviation, maritime, agriculture and manufacturing, all of which must be disposed of as quickly as possible regardless of the challenges the agency was facing.