Botswana has appointed a local consultancy, Minchin & Kelly to guide the privatisation of Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) in a move expected to end the parastatal’s monopoly as the country’s sole beef exporter.
Obakeng Moumakwa, Chief Executive Officer of the Public Enterprises Evaluation and Privatisation Agency (PEEPA) told reporters in Gaborone last Friday that the consultancy will develop a strategy and transaction plan to guide the parastatal’s privatisation.
“Their responsibilities will include carrying out a business, financial and human resource assessment of BMC, valuation of BMC and submitting a comprehensive project completion report at the end of the project,” Moumakwa said, adding that the project is expected to be completed by the end of August.
The government decided to privatise BMC in February 2018 and directed PEEPA to lead the privatisation process, Moumakwa said.
“It has been a long but very informative process that involved consultations with all key stakeholders, particularly farmers, as the privatisation of BMC has a direct impact on their livelihoods,” he said.
“Their concerns and suggestions were duly noted and taken onboard because the government’s committed to ensuring that privatisation is fair, transparent and in the best interests of Batswana,” Moumakwa said.
The process of privatising the BMC commences
The Government has decided to retain Maun Abattoir as a government entity for strategic purposes, Public Enterprises Evaluation and Privatization Agency (PEEPA) CEO, Obakeng Moumakwa says. Speaking at a press briefing held in Gaborone recently, he said Maun Abattoir would not be privatised along with the Lobatse and Francistown Abattoirs.
“Since Maun Abattoir serves farmers in the Red Zone, it will be retained as a strategic facility placed to deter farmers from smuggling cattle from Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) infested areas into the Green Zone as this would endanger Botswana’s beef industry,” Moumakwa said.
He said the government had, therefore, decided to retain Maun Abattoir and engage a strategic partner to operate it through a Concession Agreement.
“We issued a tender in March 2019 seeking the services of a Transaction Advisor to assist us with separating the Maun Abattoir from BMC Lobatse and Francistown hence engaging a Concessionaire to operate the Maun Abattoir. Therefore, we had to establish a new limited liability company to house BMC Maun to provide technical advice during negotiations and to finalise the signing of the concession agreement with the preferred Concessionaire.”
Moumakwa said that after a rigorous tendering and selection process, Minchin & Kelly was selected as the preferred consultants for the privatisation of BMC. He noted that their responsibilities would include carrying out a business financial and human resource assessment of BMC as well as developing a strategy and transaction plan to guide the privatisation. He said Deloitte Consulting was selected as the Transaction Advisors for the concession of the Maun Abattoir.
Moumakwa further said that he was confident that the two companies have the capability and competence to deliver the projects on time and within budget. Additionally, he said he believed they would enjoy a fruitful relationship as they advance the government’s commitment to employment creation and economic development.
For his part, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agricultural Development and Food Security, Jimmy Opelo said before privatising the BMC, they wanted to ensure that objectives such ensuring the private sector takes part in the development of the country including the meat-processing business were met as well as to guarantee that there was no monopoly.
He said the consultants were brought in to look further into the competitive areas and niche market that could be realised in the process of privatisation. He said there should be no fear of people losing their jobs due to the privatisation.
The next step will involve registering the BMC as a limited liability company under the Companies Act, developing a privatisation strategy that provides the various options on how BMC can be privatised as well as recommending and implementing the optimal privatisation method after approval by Cabinet.
Source: infosurhoy.com, BOPA