Naira trades flat at 363/dollar
The naira is expected to remain stable across its multiple exchange rates as the currency hit a resistance level for investors and the Central Bank of Nigeria continues to intervene on the official market.
According to Reuters, the local unit has hit resistance at 360/dollar for investors as banks are not willing to bid the United States currency below that level and as foreign investors continue to buy bonds at attractive yields, boosting dollar liquidity. On the official market the naira has been quoted at around 305 per dollar for more than three months and is expected to trade at this level next week.
FBN Holding posts N439.2 billion gross earnings in Q3
FBN Holding Plc has posted a gross earnings of N439.2billion in its nine months operations, against N417.4billion achieved in the corresponding period in 2016. Specifically, the Bank’s unaudited result for the third quarter (Q3) ended September 30, 2017, showed a 5.2 per cent rise in gross earnings from N417.4billion to N439.2billion.
According to a statement by the Bank, the growth in gross earnings was driven largely by a 27.8 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y) growth in interest income. This was partly offset by a 43.5 per cent y-o-y decline in non-interest income. Interest income and non-interest income contributed 81.3 per cent and 18.7 per cent respectively. The growth in interest income to gross earnings was driven by increased investment in securities.
FEC approves draft 2018 Appropriation Bill
The Federal Executive Council on Thursday approved the draft 2018 Appropriation Bill, paving the way for President Muhammadu Buhari to present the document to the National Assembly. The approval was given at a meeting of the council presided over by Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udo Udoma, confirmed the approval to State House correspondents at the end of the meeting. Udoma said the Executive would liaise with the National Assembly to agree on a date that the President would present the document to the lawmakers.
Adeosun: banks still holding TSA money
Finance Minister, Mrs Kemi Adeosun has accused some Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) of sitting on funds which they ought to have remitted to the Treasury Single Account (TSA). She spoke yesterday on Sunrise Daily, a programme on Channels TV. The Federal Government had since August, 2015, directed all Ministeries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to make payments into the TSA, arguing that it will promote transparency.
Mrs. Adeosun said: “As far as I know, all the agencies are on the TSA; where there is work going on is that we have had information that some banks renamed accounts just before TSA, in other words, some banks are still sitting on our funds. “We’ve written to the bank MDs to say, look if you suspect that some funds may belong to the Federal Government, check with the Office of the Accountant General (of the Federation).
26 firms signify interest in revamping Nigeria’s refineries
About 26 firms have indicated interest to participate in the revamping of Nigeria’s four refineries, which will require investment of about $2billion (N720billion) according to the Minister of States for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe kachikwu. This comes as the U.S. Secretary of Energy, Rick Perry, has reiterated his country’s willingness to continue to encourage investment in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has four refineries, two in Port Harcourt Refining Company Limited (PHRC 1&2), and one each in Kaduna Refining & Petrochemical Company (KRPC), and Warri Refining and Petrochemicals Company Limited (WRPC). The refineries have a combined installed capacity of 445,000 barrels per day (bpd).
FG, Dangote, others sign $1.1bn pact for 540MW plant
The Federal Government and the developers of the 540-megawatts Qua Iboe Power Plant signed a Power Purchase Agreement for the development of the $1.1bn electricity generation station on Thursday.
The Dangote Group, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and Black Rhino Group, an African energy infrastructure company, signed the PPA with the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc, an agency of the Federal Government, in a ceremony that was presided over by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, in Abuja.
BOA develops strategies to boost agricultural sector
As part of measures to boost the nation ‘s economy, the Bank of Agriculture (BoA) has said that strategies for adequate financing of the Agricultural sector that would generate employment and empower clients in Agri- business.
Also, the Bank emphasised that the strategies would reduce poverty and earn foreign exchange for the nation. The Managing Director of the Bank, Alhaji Kabir Adamu, while delivering an address at the opening of financial bid for the selection of consultants for the BoA capacity building and institutional strengthening project of African Development Bank (AfDB), said that the bank would ensure that efforts to grow the country’s agriculture sector to meet the standard set by government is not compromised.
NNPC begins oil exploration in Nasarawa
Oil search in Nigeria’s inland basins has received a boost following the commencement of exploration activities in the Nasarawa State’s section of the Benue Trough by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation. The Group Managing Director, NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru, announced this during a visit to the Nasarawa State Governor, Tanko Almakura, in Lafia on Thursday.
Baru stated that the visit was in fulfilment of the presidential mandate that the NNPC should resume oil exploration activities in some of the nation’s inland basins, including the Chad Basin and Benue Trough.
Downstream operators urged to diversify as Nigeria plans to exit fuel import
Following plans by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), to stop the importation of petroleum products in the next medium term, operators in the downstream sector, who do not diversify along the value chain, may lose out on business as they may not have a role to play in the market.
The Managing Director, Pipelines and Product Marketing Company (PPMC), a subsidiary of NNPC, Umar Ajiya, said this during the inauguration of the flagship mega retail outlet of Emadeb Energy Services Limited, a player in the downstream oil sector in Lagos. Ajiya, who noted that integrating from upstream to downstream sector should be the key desire of any entity, commended the oil firm for retooling in the right direction.
Don’t expect commodity shake-up next year, W’Bank tells Nigeria
The World Bank says the big drop in export commodity prices that led to significant economic shocks last year in commodity exporting countries including Nigeria may not occur in 2018. According to the World Bank, countries trading in export commodities next year should look for small upticks in oil and crops prices.
But overall, raw-material prices may get stuck in a bit of a lull. This was the summary of a report issued on Thursday by analysts for the Washington-based World Bank, Bloomberg reported. The bank forecasts an index of energy products to climb by four per cent in 2018, while agricultural goods are expected to rise by 1.2 per cent and metals and minerals to drop by about 0.7 per cent.
‘Why competitors want to acquire 9 Mobile’
Africa’s biggest telco MTN and India’s Bharti Airtel (operating as Airtel Nigeria) have respectively expressed interest in acquiring 9 Mobile, formerly known as Etisalat Nigeria. Earlier in the year, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had to save the company from collapse when the foreign investors pulled out of the company and stripped it of their patented brand, Etisalat. Etisalat Nigeria had defaulted in repaying a credit facility worth $1.2 billion got from a group of 13 banks. CBN’s intervention led to the banks agreeing to stop collecting the principal and interest payments until the company gets new investors.
If acquired by any of the two telecom giants, which have expressed interest, the acquisition will bequeath 9 Mobile’s over 20 million subscribers and 14 market share to the new buyer. “Companies would only want to buy their competitor to kill competition,” said Abiola Ajala, financial analyst and associate member, Institute of Credit and Risk Management of Nigeria (ICRM). “They sometimes buy competitor to liquidate it, so there won’t be competition,” he added.
FG to introduce solar-powered tricycles this year
The Federal Government on Thursday announced that it would introduce solar-powered tricycles, popularly known as Keke, in order to gradually phase out petrol engine tricycles currently being used as means of transportation across the country.
It said the solar-powered tricycles would be showcased at a forthcoming expo in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, in December this year. The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, said the government was working assiduously on introducing the solar-powered tricycles, which are clean and non-polluting with zero emissions.
FG Takes Further Step Towards Improving Ease of Doing Business
The Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) Thursday announced its termination of the Outline Business Case (OBC) and Full Business Case (FBC) compliance certification fees. This became effective since October 19th, 2017.
The ICRC explained in a statement by its acting Director General, Mr. Chidi Izuwah that the decision to discontinue with the respective fees was as a result of feedback from stakeholders and potential investors with respect to the cost and procedure of Public Private Partnership (PPP) project preparation. This, according to Izuwah, was also aimed at giving additional push to government’s move to improve Ease of Doing Business in the country.
African Leaders Urged to Create Gas Pricing Index
Africa should develop a gas pricing index based on the cost of electricity set midway between existing global benchmarks to ensure fairer pricing in new export projects on the continent, two African ministers said.
The idea is being floated when the world’s poorest continent, where 600 million people are without electricity, is turning to liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a cheaper way to power up amid plentiful global supply.