Economic News Update

Economic News Update: 17th February, 2017

news-brief

CBN borrows N202.4bn via T-Bills at yields below inflation

The Central Bank of Nigeria sold N202.44bn worth of Treasury bills at an auction on Wednesday at yields lower than the inflation rate, the CBN said on Thursday. The amount raised was more than the N142.43bn it had initially proposed, but it increased its offer due to the volume of demand by investors, Reuters reported.

The CBN raised N140bn in the one-year Treasury bill at 18.44 per cent, shy of the 18.72 per cent inflation rate for January and compared with 18.54 per cent similar note fetched at the previous auction on February 2.

Read More

Nigerian Airlines Spend over N10bn Annually on Taxes

Nigerian airlines pay over N10 billion on taxes annually, according to recent estimates by airline Operators of Nigeria (AON). The AON said the huge taxes undermine profitability and threaten the ability of the airlines to maintain their aircraft overseas.

These taxes are paid by commercial airlines in schedule services, charter airlines and companies that provide services to oil and gas companies, including Bristow, Caverton, Aero and others

Read More

NEC asks CBN to review forex policy

The National Economic Council on Thursday called on the Central Bank of Nigeria to embark on an urgent review of its foreign exchange policy. The council also resolved to inject fresh $250m into the Sovereign Wealth Fund. The decisions were taken at the council’s first meeting of the year presided over by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja

Rivers State Deputy Governor, Ipalibo Banigo; Nassarawa State Deputy Governor, Silas Agara; Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun; and Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh, briefed State House correspondents at the end of the meeting.

Read More

Seaport Traffic Declines By 20.6% on Forex Illiquidity

Following the inability of importers and exporters to get the needed foreign exchange (forex) to transact their businesses, coupled with insecurity in Nigeria’s coastal waters, activities at the nation’s seaports have dropped significantly.

According to the ship traffic statistics drawn from the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), 4,025 vessels berthed at the various ports across the country last year, showing a decline of 20.6 per cent compared to 5071 vessels recorded in 2015.

Read More

Naira crashes to 516 as dollar scarcity widens

The naira appears to have entered a free fall mode with the local currency selling for 516 per United States dollar on the streets of Lagos on Thursday. The naira plummeted at the parallel market from 510/dollar on Wednesday to 516/dollar on Thursday.

Currency dealers on the streets of Lagos Island sold the greenback at 516 and bought same for 513. In Egbeda, a major black market centre in Lagos, the naira was sold for 516 and bought at 510. At the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, the dollar was bought on the parallel market for 516 and sold at 513.

Read More

FG nets $2.445bn from crude sales in 2016

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), yesterday disclosed that total export sales of crude oil and gas for the country from January to December 2016 stands at $2,445,451,363.

According to a statement from the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Ndu Ughamadu, the national oil firm recorded a total export sale of $195.40 million in crude oil and gas in December 2016 as against $166.18 million recorded in November 2016. The figure, he noted, is $20.22 million higher than the preceding month.

Read More

FG owes retirees N143bn, says PenCom

The National Pension Commission on Thursday said that the Federal Government owed a total of N142.6bn in pension liabilities to retired workers from 2014 to 2016. The Director-General, PenCom, Mrs. Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, disclosed this in a memorandum submitted to the Senate Committee on Establishments and Public Service at the 2017 budget defence session.

A copy of the memorandum was made available to our correspondents. The DG expressed worry over the inability of the government to adequately fund the Retirement Benefits Bond Redemption Fund Account, adding that the development had left huge liabilities in the payment of pensions to retirees.

Read More

‘Increase vegetables export to EU’

Nigerians have been urged to increase their vegetables exports to reap  from the reported shortage of vegetables in Europe.

According to a February 8 story in The Wall Street Journal, consumers in northern Europe are seeing extremely limited availability of a number of vegetables. The shortages started in December, when severe flooding and snow hit Spain’s Murcia region along the Mediterranean Sea, damaging crops and preventing farmers from planting. Spain is the primary source of vegetables for the continent during the winter.

Read More

AMCON to restructure Arik Air for sale

Nigeria’s “bad bank” said on Thursday it has taken over the day-to-day running of Arik Air in an attempt to rescue the country’s largest airline, which it placed in receivership last week after it was unable to pay workers and creditors.

The statement came after Mr. Michael Arumemi-Ikhide, the founder of Arik Air, said the government seized the airline to turn it into a “national carrier” and told Reuters he would challenge the move in court. Arik Air, which controls around 55 per cent of the domestic market as West Africa’s biggest airline by passenger numbers, has been hard hit by currency crisis as its customers have to pay for fuel in dollars not naira.

Read More

CBN Disburses $2.8bn For Raw Materials In December, January

In clearing backlog of dollar demands in the country, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said it has disbursed the sum of $2.83 billion for utilization in the critical sectors of the economy such as manufacturing, agriculture aviation, petroleum products between December 2016 and January 2017.

According to the apex bank, priority was given to manufacturing, raw material and agriculture above other demands as its disbursements are targeted at employment generating and wealth creating sectors of the economy. CBN in a presrelease signed by the acting director, corporate communications, Mr. Isaac Okorafor stated that the sum of $609 million and $228 million were released for raw materials in the months of December and January respectively while manufacturing also attracted the sum $53 million and $71 million respectively during the same period.

Read More

Manufacturers, others got $2.8bn in two months —CBN

The Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday said it made available $2.83bn worth of foreign exchange for the importation of various types of equipment in the real sector of the economy between December 2016 and January this year.

The amount was made available to the manufacturers to enable them to source for raw materials and spare parts to boost their production capacities.

Read More

Nigeria’s Oil Production Rises To 2mbp – Kachikwu

Minister of state for petroleum resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, has said the country now produces two million barrels of oil per day (bpd). Kachikwu said this when he defended his ministry’s budget before the House of Representatives committee on petroleum resources (Upstream). He told the committee, which was chaired by Victor Nwokolo, a lawmaker from Delta state, that ongoing repairs on oil facilities and negotiations with militant groups in the Niger Delta region were yielding results.

Kachikwu also informed lawmakers that repair works on the Forcados Oil Terminal were almost completed. He stated that in a matter of weeks, the facility could be reopened, a development that would further shoot up oil production to 2.2 million bpd.

Read More

We’re yet to decide on W’Bank loan –FG

The Federal Government yesterday said it is yet to decide on the size of World Bank loan it intends to apply for to close the funding gap in its 2017 budget.

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, made the disclosure at the end of the longest Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting (over seven hours), presided over by the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo. Udoma was responding to a question on whether the World Bank loan formed part of council’s deliberations and the decisions reached.

Read More

Render forex returns in uniform format, CBN tells banks

 The Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday directed Deposit Money Banks in the country to render returns on foreign exchange in a uniform format.

The apex bank has been under pressure in the last few weeks over its policy on foreign exchange management which some people have described as unfriendly to the business and investing communities.

Read More

FG To Inject N127bn Into Sovereign Wealth Fund

The federal government hinted yesterday that it will inject fresh $250 million sourced from the excess crude account (ECA) into the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF). This is coming just as the National Economic Council (NEC) has expressed concern over the current situation of the exchange rate, saying there is need for an urgent review of the current Forex Policy.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun after NEC meeting presided over by the acting president, Yemi Osinbajo and attended by governors of the 36 states of the federation at the presidential villa, Abuja

Read More

NNPC recorded N197.5bn loss in 2016 –Report

The group total loss of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation at the end of the 2016 financial year was N197.49bn. Latest data released on Thursday by the national oil firm showed that the corporation earned a group total revenue of N1.726tn, but recorded an expense of N1.923tn last year.

The refineries incurred the largest loss during the review period, as the sub-total loss posted by the plants last year was N77.84bn. During the year under review, the refineries in Warri, Port Harcourt and Kaduna recorded a total expense of N78.95bn.

Read More

CAC workers on three-day strike

The Amalgamation Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service, Technical and Recreation Service Employees (AUPTRE) Corporate Affairs Commissions (CAC) branch, has embarked on a three-day warning strike to push home their demands which were made four years ago and have not been fulfilled by the commission’s management.

Its Chairman, Comrade Ibrahim Kirfi disclosed this during the strike action in Abuja, which led to the locking of the CAC gate and disallowing customers, workers, and other people entering or coming out of the premises.

Read More

Nigeria not ripe for N17.36tn debt forgiveness – DMO

The Debt Management Office on Thursday said the total external and domestic debt of the Federal Government, the states and the Federal Capital Territory was N17.36tn ($57.39bn).

The DMO said the sum was made up of external debt of $11.41bn (N3.48tn) and domestic debt of $45.98bn (N13.88tn).

Read More

NLC, TUC alert Fed Govt to new trade union

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) have alerted  the Federal Government to the existence of a new labour union. Their letter dated January 19,  was signed by the NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba and his TUC counterpart, Comrade Bobboi Kaigama.

Titled: Need to avert anarchy in the industrial relations system in the country: Mushroom/Shell trade unions and addressed to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, the two leaders  said they were constrained to bring the issue to the minister’s attention because of the damage the new union could cause to the labour movement.

Read More

Comment here

Economic News Update

Economic News Update: 17th February, 2017

news-brief

CBN borrows N202.4bn via T-Bills at yields below inflation

The Central Bank of Nigeria sold N202.44bn worth of Treasury bills at an auction on Wednesday at yields lower than the inflation rate, the CBN said on Thursday. The amount raised was more than the N142.43bn it had initially proposed, but it increased its offer due to the volume of demand by investors, Reuters reported.

The CBN raised N140bn in the one-year Treasury bill at 18.44 per cent, shy of the 18.72 per cent inflation rate for January and compared with 18.54 per cent similar note fetched at the previous auction on February 2.

Read More

Nigerian Airlines Spend over N10bn Annually on Taxes

Nigerian airlines pay over N10 billion on taxes annually, according to recent estimates by airline Operators of Nigeria (AON). The AON said the huge taxes undermine profitability and threaten the ability of the airlines to maintain their aircraft overseas.

These taxes are paid by commercial airlines in schedule services, charter airlines and companies that provide services to oil and gas companies, including Bristow, Caverton, Aero and others

Read More

NEC asks CBN to review forex policy

The National Economic Council on Thursday called on the Central Bank of Nigeria to embark on an urgent review of its foreign exchange policy. The council also resolved to inject fresh $250m into the Sovereign Wealth Fund. The decisions were taken at the council’s first meeting of the year presided over by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja

Rivers State Deputy Governor, Ipalibo Banigo; Nassarawa State Deputy Governor, Silas Agara; Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun; and Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh, briefed State House correspondents at the end of the meeting.

Read More

Seaport Traffic Declines By 20.6% on Forex Illiquidity

Following the inability of importers and exporters to get the needed foreign exchange (forex) to transact their businesses, coupled with insecurity in Nigeria’s coastal waters, activities at the nation’s seaports have dropped significantly.

According to the ship traffic statistics drawn from the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), 4,025 vessels berthed at the various ports across the country last year, showing a decline of 20.6 per cent compared to 5071 vessels recorded in 2015.

Read More

Naira crashes to 516 as dollar scarcity widens

The naira appears to have entered a free fall mode with the local currency selling for 516 per United States dollar on the streets of Lagos on Thursday. The naira plummeted at the parallel market from 510/dollar on Wednesday to 516/dollar on Thursday.

Currency dealers on the streets of Lagos Island sold the greenback at 516 and bought same for 513. In Egbeda, a major black market centre in Lagos, the naira was sold for 516 and bought at 510. At the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, the dollar was bought on the parallel market for 516 and sold at 513.

Read More

FG nets $2.445bn from crude sales in 2016

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), yesterday disclosed that total export sales of crude oil and gas for the country from January to December 2016 stands at $2,445,451,363.

According to a statement from the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Ndu Ughamadu, the national oil firm recorded a total export sale of $195.40 million in crude oil and gas in December 2016 as against $166.18 million recorded in November 2016. The figure, he noted, is $20.22 million higher than the preceding month.

Read More

FG owes retirees N143bn, says PenCom

The National Pension Commission on Thursday said that the Federal Government owed a total of N142.6bn in pension liabilities to retired workers from 2014 to 2016. The Director-General, PenCom, Mrs. Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, disclosed this in a memorandum submitted to the Senate Committee on Establishments and Public Service at the 2017 budget defence session.

A copy of the memorandum was made available to our correspondents. The DG expressed worry over the inability of the government to adequately fund the Retirement Benefits Bond Redemption Fund Account, adding that the development had left huge liabilities in the payment of pensions to retirees.

Read More

‘Increase vegetables export to EU’

Nigerians have been urged to increase their vegetables exports to reap  from the reported shortage of vegetables in Europe.

According to a February 8 story in The Wall Street Journal, consumers in northern Europe are seeing extremely limited availability of a number of vegetables. The shortages started in December, when severe flooding and snow hit Spain’s Murcia region along the Mediterranean Sea, damaging crops and preventing farmers from planting. Spain is the primary source of vegetables for the continent during the winter.

Read More

AMCON to restructure Arik Air for sale

Nigeria’s “bad bank” said on Thursday it has taken over the day-to-day running of Arik Air in an attempt to rescue the country’s largest airline, which it placed in receivership last week after it was unable to pay workers and creditors.

The statement came after Mr. Michael Arumemi-Ikhide, the founder of Arik Air, said the government seized the airline to turn it into a “national carrier” and told Reuters he would challenge the move in court. Arik Air, which controls around 55 per cent of the domestic market as West Africa’s biggest airline by passenger numbers, has been hard hit by currency crisis as its customers have to pay for fuel in dollars not naira.

Read More

CBN Disburses $2.8bn For Raw Materials In December, January

In clearing backlog of dollar demands in the country, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said it has disbursed the sum of $2.83 billion for utilization in the critical sectors of the economy such as manufacturing, agriculture aviation, petroleum products between December 2016 and January 2017.

According to the apex bank, priority was given to manufacturing, raw material and agriculture above other demands as its disbursements are targeted at employment generating and wealth creating sectors of the economy. CBN in a presrelease signed by the acting director, corporate communications, Mr. Isaac Okorafor stated that the sum of $609 million and $228 million were released for raw materials in the months of December and January respectively while manufacturing also attracted the sum $53 million and $71 million respectively during the same period.

Read More

Manufacturers, others got $2.8bn in two months —CBN

The Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday said it made available $2.83bn worth of foreign exchange for the importation of various types of equipment in the real sector of the economy between December 2016 and January this year.

The amount was made available to the manufacturers to enable them to source for raw materials and spare parts to boost their production capacities.

Read More

Nigeria’s Oil Production Rises To 2mbp – Kachikwu

Minister of state for petroleum resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, has said the country now produces two million barrels of oil per day (bpd). Kachikwu said this when he defended his ministry’s budget before the House of Representatives committee on petroleum resources (Upstream). He told the committee, which was chaired by Victor Nwokolo, a lawmaker from Delta state, that ongoing repairs on oil facilities and negotiations with militant groups in the Niger Delta region were yielding results.

Kachikwu also informed lawmakers that repair works on the Forcados Oil Terminal were almost completed. He stated that in a matter of weeks, the facility could be reopened, a development that would further shoot up oil production to 2.2 million bpd.

Read More

We’re yet to decide on W’Bank loan –FG

The Federal Government yesterday said it is yet to decide on the size of World Bank loan it intends to apply for to close the funding gap in its 2017 budget.

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, made the disclosure at the end of the longest Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting (over seven hours), presided over by the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo. Udoma was responding to a question on whether the World Bank loan formed part of council’s deliberations and the decisions reached.

Read More

Render forex returns in uniform format, CBN tells banks

 The Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday directed Deposit Money Banks in the country to render returns on foreign exchange in a uniform format.

The apex bank has been under pressure in the last few weeks over its policy on foreign exchange management which some people have described as unfriendly to the business and investing communities.

Read More

FG To Inject N127bn Into Sovereign Wealth Fund

The federal government hinted yesterday that it will inject fresh $250 million sourced from the excess crude account (ECA) into the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF). This is coming just as the National Economic Council (NEC) has expressed concern over the current situation of the exchange rate, saying there is need for an urgent review of the current Forex Policy.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun after NEC meeting presided over by the acting president, Yemi Osinbajo and attended by governors of the 36 states of the federation at the presidential villa, Abuja

Read More

NNPC recorded N197.5bn loss in 2016 –Report

The group total loss of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation at the end of the 2016 financial year was N197.49bn. Latest data released on Thursday by the national oil firm showed that the corporation earned a group total revenue of N1.726tn, but recorded an expense of N1.923tn last year.

The refineries incurred the largest loss during the review period, as the sub-total loss posted by the plants last year was N77.84bn. During the year under review, the refineries in Warri, Port Harcourt and Kaduna recorded a total expense of N78.95bn.

Read More

CAC workers on three-day strike

The Amalgamation Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service, Technical and Recreation Service Employees (AUPTRE) Corporate Affairs Commissions (CAC) branch, has embarked on a three-day warning strike to push home their demands which were made four years ago and have not been fulfilled by the commission’s management.

Its Chairman, Comrade Ibrahim Kirfi disclosed this during the strike action in Abuja, which led to the locking of the CAC gate and disallowing customers, workers, and other people entering or coming out of the premises.

Read More

Nigeria not ripe for N17.36tn debt forgiveness – DMO

The Debt Management Office on Thursday said the total external and domestic debt of the Federal Government, the states and the Federal Capital Territory was N17.36tn ($57.39bn).

The DMO said the sum was made up of external debt of $11.41bn (N3.48tn) and domestic debt of $45.98bn (N13.88tn).

Read More

NLC, TUC alert Fed Govt to new trade union

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) have alerted  the Federal Government to the existence of a new labour union. Their letter dated January 19,  was signed by the NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba and his TUC counterpart, Comrade Bobboi Kaigama.

Titled: Need to avert anarchy in the industrial relations system in the country: Mushroom/Shell trade unions and addressed to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, the two leaders  said they were constrained to bring the issue to the minister’s attention because of the damage the new union could cause to the labour movement.

Read More

Comment here