Naira records marginal gain, closes at 366/dollar
The naira rebounded on Monday and closed at 366 per United States dollar. The local unit, which opened last week at 369/dollar had closed at 367/dollar on Friday. The naira weakened two weeks ago and traded flat at 369/dollar for some days. Earlier, the local currency had been closing flat at 365/dollar.
This followed the Central Bank of Nigeria’s continued injection of the greenback into the foreign exchange market. The CBN has been injecting between $250m and $300m into the various segments of the inter-bank foreign exchange market in recent times. Meanwhile, the CBN on Monday injected $195m into the three segments of the foreign exchange market.
Ogunbanjo Emerges President of Nigerian Stock Exchange
The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Monday elected Mr. Abimbola Ogunbanjo as the new president of national council of the exchange. He will take over from Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, who has served his three-year tenure. Ogunbanjo was elected at the NSE’ national council meeting held immediately after its 56th annual general meeting(AGM) in Lagos.
Ogunbanjo joined the national council of the exchange in 2011 and has been the first vice president since 2014. He is currently the Managing Partner of the corporate law firm of Chris Ogunbanjo & Co. He is the chairman of the Demutualisation Advisory Committee of the NSE.
Oil price hits 26-month high, nears $59
The global oil benchmark, Brent crude, extended its gains on Monday, rising to its highest level in more than two years. The sharp increase came on the back of fast-growing demand and Turkey’s threat to Iraqi Kurdistan’s crude exports as the autonomous region holds a referendum on independence.
Brent, against which half of the world’s oil is priced, rose by $1.96 to $58.82 per barrel as of 7.10pm Nigerian time, the highest level since July 2015. It has gained more than 30 per cent since June as global stockpiles have tightened, with demand in industrialised countries expanding alongside emerging markets for the first time in almost a decade.
CBN, banks bicker over slow disbursement of SMEs funds
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and lenders involved in the disbursement of N220 billion Small, Medium Enterprises (SMEs) funds to small businesses have traded blames over the slow pace of the disbursement of the funds.
The Group Head, Specialised SMEs of Fidelity Bank, Mr Ndubuisi Onuoha blamed the CBN for the slow pace of disbursement of the funds when asked by a participant why the bank was yet to fund his business over a year after meeting all the requirements.
Nigeria: Getting public-private partnership right
Last Friday the Government’s Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) blazed an important trail by publishing details of 51 Federal Public-Private Partnership (PPP) contracts- the culmination of a year’s worth of work with the World Bank to ensure that all non-confidential information from PPP contracts is easily accessible to the public. We hope other countries will follow Nigeria’s trend-setting lead.
Nigeria’s infrastructure needs remain acute. The country needs more railways, roads, and ports to get products to market; electricity for homes, schools and businesses; water and sanitation to keep its people healthy and to support crops; and modern communications services for everyone.
FG to reintroduce tolls on federal highways
The Federal Government on Monday said it would reintroduce tolling on the nation’s highways to raise the much needed funds to maintain the roads. The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, stated this while addressing members of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, who visited him in his office in Abuja.
The minister’s position may be an endorsement of the Senate’s proposal in July for the return of tolls on federal roads and the setting aside of 0.5 per cent of transport fares paid by passengers on inter-state trips to generate funds for the rehabilitation and maintenance of roads in the country.
EU-Nigeria trade hit €19.9 billion in 2016
Counsellor and Head of Trade and Economics of the European Union Delegation to Nigeria and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Fillippo Amato, has said trade between Nigeria and European Union (EU) member states stood at 19.9 billion Euros in 2016,
Besides, Amato stressed the need for the Nigerian government to expand its tax base in order to diversify its revenue. He disclosed this at a press conference to announce its sixth edition of the EU-Nigeria Business Forum slated for October 5 to 6 in Lagos.
NSE recorded N22.79bn total assets for 2016
The Nigerian Stock Exchange total assets as at December 2016 were N22.79bn, according to its Chief Executive Officer, Oscar Onyema. Onyema made the disclosure at the bourse’s 56th Annual General Meeting of its members on Monday in Lagos.
During the meeting, the financial statements of the Exchange as at December 31, 2016 and the reports of the National Council and auditors were presented to the members as part of the ordinary business of the day.
SON: importers sabotaging govt’s economic programmes
The Director-General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) Mr. Osita Aboloma has accused unscrupulous importers of sabotaging Federal Government’s economic recovery programmes through false imports declaration at the country’s entry ports.
Speaking in Lagos during the inspection of over seven container loads of products intercepted by the agency’s Enforcement Team, Aboloma lamented that the importers of the products tooking undue advantage of government’s good intentions in promoting ease of doing business in the country.
23 states exceeded borrowing limits– FRC
Contrary to the guidelines of the Debt Management Office on subnational borrowing, 23 states of the federation exceeded their borrowing limits in 2015, the Fiscal Responsibility Commission has said.
In a report on the states and indebtedness, the FRC said Lagos, Kaduna, Cross River, Gombe, Ekiti, Edo, Ondo and Imo states had borrowed more than 50 per cent of their annual statutory allocations by 2015. Other states in the same boat are Zamfara, Adamawa, Oyo, Abia, Ogun, Taraba, Kebbi, Enugu, Bauchi, Nasarawa, Kano, Benue, Kwara, Katsina and Sokoto.
Fashola: States, LGs Owe Larger Chunk of N90bn MDAs Debt to Discos
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, has said that states and local governments, not the federal government owe the larger parts of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) debts the 11 electricity distribution companies (Discos) have frequently claimed.
Fashola, stated that out of the about N90billion the Discos have often said was owed them by government MDAs, the federal government’s share of it has been verified to be just N27 billion, with the balance owed by states and local governments.
LCCI, experts to engage Fashola on power sector issues
The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry is set to host the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, and other experts to a policy dialogue on the power sector.
According to a statement issued by the Director-General, LCCI, Mr. Muda Yusuf, on Monday, the dialogue, which is aimed at examining and proffering solutions to the challenges in the nation’s power sector, is to hold in Lagos on Thursday. Yusuf said the dialogue was part of the chamber’s public sector engagement programmes for the growth of the nation’s economy.