BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The privatization and commercialization of public enterprises is a policy that was initiated in the Nigerian economy by the Babangida Administration. Today it is pursued in different forms in a number of developing and developed nations around the world.
In Nigeria privatization and commercialization of public enterprises continues to be at the forefront of economic reforms and it is a key policy instrument in the move towards a more market-oriented economy. According to Mukandala (198:30) privatization and commercialization of public enterprises have been rationalized as a solution to a state that had become too big in terms of its functions, too heavy in terms of its costs and very ineffective in terms of its performance and all this at the expense of private sector. Obadan (2000) noted that a sizable proportion of African governments including Nigerian, since the economic recession of the 80s, have come to recognize the need to transfer some economic activities performed by the state to the private sector, especially in view of the very poor delivery of public services by public enterprises.
The poor performances of the public enterprises are as a result of strong undue interference by supervising ministries and unnecessary political interference and manipulation which are commercially and economically unethical. These and many others hinder these corporations from performing efficiently, thereby encouraging the call for their privatization and commercialization.
However, the policy of privatization and commercialization in Nigeria has come to be accepted with mixed feelings. Some Nigerians are not comfortable with the policy while to some the policy is seen as a welcome development meant to re-organise and restructure these enterprises and consequently put then on the path of efficiency.
This work is therefore borne out to assess the issues, prospects and challenges associated with the implementation of the policy.
STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
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PRIVATIZATION AND COMMERCIALIZATION IN NIGERIA: ISSUES, PROBLEMS AND PROSPECTS