Making progress on realisation of PPPs
FACING increasingly constrained budgets and with an inability to generate additional revenues, many governments have turned to partnerships with the private and nonprofit sectors. Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) are regularly touted, sometimes to the point of excess, as being innovative and all-encompassing solutions to these budgetary constraints
The Minister of Finance, Calle Schettwein, earlier this week inaugurated the PPP Committee, a major stride which will see government partnering with private companies to bring about growth to a slacking Namibian economy.
Speaking at the occasion, Schlettwein stated that in line with the PPP Act, Act No. 4 of 2017, he is empowered to appoint members of the PPP Committee. Schlettwein further stated that the appointments were done following an open, fair and transparent process which saw a public invitation and interview process. Schlettwein further stated that the PPP Committee consists of seven members comprised of one senior staff member from the Ministry of Finance, who is the chairperson, and such other persons, who are suitably qualified, fit and proper persons, having knowledge and experience relevant to the functions of the PPP Committee. The appointment of the members of the PPP Committee is for a period of three years with effect from 1 December 2018.
This PPP Committee shall mainly be responsible for appraising documentations at various stages of a PPP project’s life cycle and opine on ‘transaction approvals’ in line with provisions of the PPP Act. Additionally, the PPP Committee will advise the Minister on policies relating to PPPs.
Schlettwein, however, warned that there is a considerable danger in PPPs, adding that while capital will be leveraged from the private sector, while governments role will be ensuring that risks are shared and financiers will get fair returns. Projects which will be undertaken by the PPP board include office complexes in the city center, the transport sector, services in the health sector, housing, and water provision and desalination.
The Ministry of Finance shortlisted 12 applicants who met both the academic and experience requirements, based on the number of years of experience in various disciplines ranging from PPPs, infrastructure projects, policy formulation, planning and appraisal of large infrastructure projects and procurement in general.
A Selection Committee was established comprising of members from the public and private sector to interview and recommend to the Minister of Finance, the members of the PPP Committee. The appointment of the PPP committee was also approved and endorsed by the Cabinet Committee on Overall Policy and Priorities and Cabinet, respectively. Members of the PPP committee include Ally Angula – Chairperson, Hellen Amupolo, Nangula Uaandja, Annely Julia Haiphene, Steve Galloway, James Myupe and Michael Mukete.