1.1       Background to the Problem

A global trend has emerged aimed at reducing government‘s involvement in the economy. This global trend came about through the process of privatization or both privatization and commercialization of government owned enterprises.

In Nigeria, as part of its programmes of National Economic Reforms, the Federal Government introduced privatisation along with commercialization.

Thus, commercialization was conceived as an alternative to privatisation in some cases.[1] That is to say, commercialisation was introduced as an alternative to privatisation which was deemed inappropriate.

The reasons offered for this economic policy vary from country to country. For example, in Britain it was resorted to as ―an ideologically based program, devised and driven by a powerful leader, motivated by a combination of intellectual conviction of the benefits of free markets and hatred of the power of organised labour‖.[2] 

In some jurisdictions, commercialisation is not used in the same context as it is being used in Nigeria.

Thus in Jurisdiction like South Africa, it is believed that commercialisation is one of the phases of privatisation. Hence, it was submitted that ―the entity should first be corporatized, then commercialized, but in South Africa, Privatisation[3] was perceived, and thus, embraced as a veritable instrument in the restructuring of its troubled economy.[4] 

This is in tandem with reasons given by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which universalized the programme as a key element in economic restructuring of distressed economies especially in Africa.[5] Hence, Privatisation and Commercialisation became components of structural adjustment program of the IMF.

In Nigeria, and in most countries of Africa, interest in the program is motivated by the desire to correct past failures of development policies and reduce money losing trends of government owned enterprises.[6] The programme of privatisation and commercialisation became imperative with the national aspiration to strike a balance between political independence and economic independence.

This reason is apt since a country with political independence devoid of economic independence will not thrive. For any country in the world to survive and develop, the duo of political and economic independence must co-exist side by side. The political stability of every country depends largely on its sound economic policies, growth and development.

Leave a comment

Open chat
How may we assist you please?
× How can I help you?