NEPC being weaned off government dependence

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Staff Reporter

Windhoek-Although government has significantly reduced its subsidy to New Era Publication Corporation (NEPCs), the corporation’s earnings remain on an upward trajectory despite tough market conditions that have led to the closure of some media houses in the country. In fact, for the financial year ended 31 March 2016, the corporation’s revenue – excluding government subsidy, interest earned, and other income ‑ stood at N$35.5 million, a 4.7 percent increase over the previous year revenues of N$33.9 million.

NEPC’s revenue for the 2015 financial year, excluding subsidy, interest received and other income, went up 19.5 percent over N$28.33 million recorded in 2014. The profit for the 2015 financial year came in at N$4.83 million up from the N$1.82 million surplus recorded in 2014 after taxation. Asset base doubled from N$24.2 million in 2014 to more than N$50 million in 2016, according to the Auditor General Junias Kandjeke’s reports on NEPC. On Tuesday, Kandjeke tabled reports on NEPC’s financial affairs in the National Assembly.

Revenue including other income and interests, but excluding subsidy, came in at N$36.1 million in 2016 and N$34.5 million in 2015.

Comparably, government’s subsidy between 2014 and 2016 was at N$13 million each year, minus the additional funds from Treasury in 2015 to cater for capital expenditure, which pushed up the subsidy to N$37.6 million for that year.

Directors’ fees increased from N$183 706 in 2014 to N$283 420 in 2015 and to about N$300 000 in 2016, and not N$645 908 ‑ a figure erroneously reflected in the report. Salaries and wages are at 30 percent of the overall total expenditure bill over the financial periods under review. This is so even though expenditure went up in 2016, as did the wage bill with N$4 million. Expenditure also reflects N$14.8 million in tax penalties.

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