Economic News Update

Business & Economic News Update: Tuesday 11th July, 2017


CBN to intensify fight against money laundering, others

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has given an assurance that the bank will intensify its fight against money laundering and other financial crimes in the banking sector.

He stated this in Abuja on Monday at the opening session of the ‘Regional course on combatting money laundering and other financial crimes’.

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How DMO paid N4.8tr servicing domestic debt interest in five years

The Debt Management Office (DMO) paid out over N4.8 trillion as interests in the last five years to banks and other investors. The money was lent to Nigerian Government from the domestic market through the FGN Bonds; Treasury Bonds or Treasury Bills issued by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) as part of measures to check inflation caused by excess liquidity in the economy.

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NERC begins forceful revenue collection from power firms

The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission on Monday stated that it had commenced enforcement procedures against power distribution companies in respect to the remittance of revenue.

It, however, did not explain how it went about the process, considering the fact that only two power distribution companies were able to make over 90 per cent remittance to the electricity Market Operator in May 2017, which was the latest monthly performance report released by the MO.

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Oil rises above $44 on OPEC cap

Oil prices hovered above $44 a barrel as the market weighed the likelihood and potential effectiveness of Libya and Nigeria production capping. Investors’ skepticism over whether Libya and Nigeria will agree to limit supplies kept futures trading in a $1.19-range in New York.

Kuwait’s Oil Minister IssamAlmarzooq said in Istanbul that the two African producers, who have boosted output since being exempt from the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) cuts, have been invited to a July 24 meeting in Russia to discuss the stability of their production,  BNP Paribas SA reduced its price forecasts for this year and next because supply growth elsewhere is diluting the impact of the OPEC-led curbs.

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Trade hits $3.8bn at I&E window, CBN sells $142m

The Central Bank of Nigeria’s Investors and Exporters Foreign Exchange window has traded about $3.83bn since it was established on April 24, it has been learnt. Foreign exchange traders said this on Monday as the naira traded more strongly on the window than on the black market, Reuters reported.

The window, where buyers and sellers are free to agree an exchange rate, was introduced by the CBN in April to try to attract foreign investors into the country and boost the supply of dollars.

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Telcos raise alarm on forex scarcity

Despite assurances by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) that it has secured a concessional foreign exchange (forex) access window for telcos from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN, the telcos at the weekend raised the alarm that they were on the brink of collapse because of forex challenges.

The carriers, under the aegis of Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), lamented that the failure of the CBN to grant them concessional forex access window was taking a terrific toll on their operations.

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FG moves to insure national assets

The Federal Government has said that it will ensure adequate insurance of its assets. The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, said this during the National Insurance Conference of the Insurance Industry Consultative Council with the theme: ‘Nigeria open for business’, in Abuja on Monday.

Adeosun said, “Foreign investors have shown great interest in the Nigerian insurance sector by entering into the market and progress can be seen in the introduction of new insurance products in the growing mortgage and housing sector.

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Nigerian Companies Yet to Fully Access $600m Local Content Fund, Seven Years After

More than seven years after the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) was set up, the agency is yet to disburse a reasonable chunk of the $600 million Nigerian Content Development Fund (NCDF) to local companies, THISDAY’s investigations have revealed.

The $600 million NCDF, underpinned by Section 104 of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act for developing capacity in the oil and gas industry, accumulated from one per cent value of all upstream contracts contributed by oil companies.

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OPEC may ask Nigeria, Libya to cut output

Nigeria and Libya may be asked to cap their crude oil output soon in an effort to help re-balance the market, the Kuwait Oil Minister, Issam Almarzooq, said on Wednesday. The two countries have boosted oil production since they were exempted from the global cuts led by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries and other producers.

OPEC and non-OPEC producers have invited the two African nations to their committee meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia, on July 24 to discuss the stability of their production, Bloomberg quoted Almarzooq as saying on the sidelines of an energy conference in Istanbul.

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Dicle: This is the Best Time to Invest in Nigeria

Despite the recession, the Managing Director of Phillips Morris, Nigeria, Mr. CoskunDicle, has seen the opportunities in the country and is urging foreign investors to come to Nigeria and invest. He spoke with select journalists. Jonathan Eze presents the excerpts:

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Etisalat begins exit from Nigeria

Etisalat International on Monday said it had terminated a management agreement with its Nigerian unit, saying that it had given the business about three weeks to phase out the Etisalat brand in the country.

The Chief Executive Officer, Etisalat International, Hatem Dowidar, told Reuters that the exit process became necessary given that the firm had been unsuccessful at converting some of its dollar debts to naira.

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OPEC Caps for Libya and Nigeria Wouldn’t Be Enough to Fix Oil Glut

A proposal that Libya and Nigeria could have to accept limits on their crude production probably wouldn’t be enough to put OPEC’s faltering efforts to eliminate a global supply glut back on track.

The two African nations — which were exempt from the supply curbs agreed last year due to internal strife — have added enough production in the last two months to offset Saudi Arabia’s cut. Should the pair accept a cap at their desired levels of output, OPEC and its allies led by Russia would still have to adjust their own quotas to compensate for the increase, said Nordine Ait-Laoussine, president of Geneva-based consultants Nalcosa and former energy minister of Algeria.

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W’Bank advocates single regulatory authority for free zones

The World Bank has called for a single regulatory authority for the regulation of the operations of free zones in Nigeria.

The global bank made its position known at a public hearing organised by the House of Representatives Committee on Commerce. The public hearing was aimed at getting input from stakeholders in respect of the proposed amendment to the Oil and Gas Export Free Zone Authority Act.

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