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Emefiele remains focused on delivering CBN mandate – Group

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Emefiele remains focused on delivering CBN mandate – Group

A support group, Emefiele Mobilization Team (EMT) says the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Dr Godwin Emefiele remains focused on delivering on his mandate as governor of the apex bank.

The group stated this in a statement by its spokesperson, Bashir Mohammed, in Abuja while reacting to claims by certain Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) that the CBN governor was involved in politics.

Also read: Emiefele, Ogunsemo others make Forbes Africa’s list

He said that contrary to the claims of the CSOs, Emefiele has not been involved in any political activity of any kind, talking less of compromising the apex bank through purported “political activities”.

Mohammed said that Emefiele had not stated or indicated in any way that he was interested in vying for the position of president.

He said that rather Emefiele remained solely focused on ensuring monetary and price stability, maintaining external reserves, providing economic and financial advice to the Federal Government and promoting a sound financial system in Nigeria.

“Recently, Emefiele launched the 100 for 100 Policy for Production and Productivity (PPP), a CBN intervention designed to stimulate investments in Nigeria’s priority sectors with the core objective of boosting production and productivity.

“He also unveiled the Mega Rice and Maize Pyramids in the FCT and Kaduna recently, both being results of the massively successful Emefiele-led Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP).

“The programme has financed over four million farmers, improved their productivity, increased rice output, reduced Agriculture imports and saved the country’s scarce forex.”

Mohammed said that Emefiele’s numerous past feats needed not to be mentioned as they were well-documented and known even to his distractors.

He said that in spite of the attempts by some people to create confusion and distract Emefiele and the CBN, Nigeria’s GDP was on the rise following its 3.4 per cent growth in 2021, the fastest growth rate in seven years.

“This is contrary to the claim by the CSOs that Mr Emefiele’s “subterranean interest” in the presidency has become a massive distraction to the CBN and the financial sector of the country,” he said.

Mohammed also described the CSOs’ allegation that the CBN’s money was being “wasted to fund different groups as “reckless and dangerous“.

Asking what evidence the CSOs have to back up their claims, Mohammed said that it was dangerous to make statements in such sensitive socio-political times.

Mohammed added that the CSOs’ claim that “Nigerians have lost confidence” in Emefiele’s leadership was in complete contrast to the opinion of the majority of Nigerians, especially those in rural areas outside of the FCT where the CSOs restricted themselves to.

“Nigerians nationwide who have directly been impacted, directly and indirectly by Emefiele’s good works continue to express their gratitude, confidence and belief that he continues to deliver on his mandate.

“Being the honourable, exemplary and law-abiding citizen that Emefiele is, if indeed he were interested in contesting for the post of president, he would do so in accordance with constitutional provisions,” he said.

Mohammed said that Emefiele would without a doubt be the capable, competent, seasoned, intelligent leader Nigeria requires in such challenging times.

In another separate statement also signed by Mohammed, the group decried what it termed as misleading a report published about the CBN’s 2020 currency operations claiming the bank “spent the sum of N58.618 billion to print N2.518 billion notes”.

He said that the CBN’s Currency Operations 2020 Annual Report clearly stated that CBN spent N58.6bn to print naira notes valued at N1.063 trillion.

“In other words, the cost of printing one naira note was N18, a cost consistent with global currency printing averages.

“Specifically, in line with the Emefiele-led CBN’s objective of ensuring that the banknotes needs of the economy are promptly and satisfactorily met, the apex bank approved N2.5 billion pieces of banknotes of various denominations in 2020.

“It also engaged the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Plc for production which delivered 100 per cent of the approved indent.”

Mohammed added that the CBN’s Currency Operations 2020 Annual Report also reveals that in line with the CBN’s cashless policy, the volume of notes produced decreased in comparison with the preceding year.

According to him, this is evidenced by the 33.40 per cent decrease in the boxes of banknotes processed.

“Furthermore, based on the CBN governor’s commitment to minimising the operating costs of the CBN, the total cost incurred on printing banknotes in 2020 reduced by 28.84per cent while more broadly, the bank’s expenses on currency operations decreased by 21.08 per cent,” Mohammed said.

He said that upon an unbiased examination of the facts and figures, it was now evident for all Nigerians to see, that contrary to the newspaper’s story, CBN had an efficient and prudent year of currency operations.

Mohammed added that in the same year the CBN under the guidance of Emefiele was able to record critical achievements despite the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The achievements, according to him, include the conclusion of the upgrade of the Cash Activity Reporting Portal (CARP) for transmission of currency management data from the financial industry to the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS).

It also includes the completion of a mint tracking system application and the commencement of the establishment of a currency laboratory for banknote quality assessment authentication, the registration of an additional Cash-in-Transit (CIT) company, bringing the total to nine CIT companies.

“To consolidate on the progress it made in 2020, the CBN is overseeing the transition to an automated currency operations system in its branches and is commencing the recycling of banknote waste,“ Mohammed said.

 

Banking & Finance

Nigeria’s debt sustainable, says DMO, as Stock Debts Soars

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Nigeria’s debt sustainable, says DMO, as Stock Debts Soars

Against the backdrop of verbal attacks on the soaring Government stock-debts profile, the Debt Management Office (DMO) has declared that Nigeria’s debt remains sustainable.

The Director-General of DMO, Patience Oniha, said this on Monday in Abuja, noting that Nigeria’s total debt stock as of June was N103 billion.

Oniha, however, insisted that there was an urgent need to boost the country’s revenue to further ameliorate the debt burden.

She suggested an efficient tax administration that would ensure greater compliance with remittances, and be devoid of all forms of evasions in the system.

According to her, most countries place more emphasis on taxation as a principal source of funding for the government.

She advised that new borrowings should be tied to projects that would generate commensurate revenues to service loans used to finance them.

She also said that physical assets such as idle or under-utilised properties could be redeveloped for commercialisation to generate revenue.

According to Oniha, the current revenue problem is compounded by leakages like oil theft and petrol subsidy.

“These have significantly reduced the revenue from crude oil sales that used to account for the bulk of government revenue,” she said.

She said that the outlooks of both the local and international markets were becoming tighter with rising interest rates.

She called for moderation in new borrowings and accelerated revenue growth to shore up non-oil revenue.

She, however, said that the country’s total public debt-to-Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio was still within reasonable limits.

“At 23.06 percent, the debt-to-GDP ratio is still within Nigeria’s self-imposed limit of 40 percent.

“It is also within the World Bank/International Monetary Fund (IMF) recommended limit of 55 percent for countries within Nigeria’s peer group and 70 percent for ECOWAS countries,” she said.

She said that debt service-to-revenue was high, adding that urgent steps needed to be taken to boost revenue and further enhance public debt sustainability.

“Nigeria’s public debt stock has grown consistently over the past decades and even faster in recent years, and debt service has continued to grow.

“The country’s low revenue base compounded by dependence on crude oil receipts resulted in budget deficits over the past decades.

“Efforts at increasing non-oil revenue are, however, yielding positive results,” she said.

According to her, with a low debt-to-GDP ratio, the debt service-to-revenue ratio would have been low if revenue were strong.

She said that Nigeria was deploying debt management tools of the World Bank and IMF to ensure debt sustainability.

“These tools include an annual Debt Sustainability Analysis (DSA) and a Medium Term Debt Management Strategy (MTDS) every four years,” she said.

Oniha listed other initiatives to ensure debt sustainability as the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF), Infrastructure for Tax Credit, Infrastructure Corporation of Nigeria Limited (InfraCorp) and Off-Balance Sheet Financing.

“The PIDF is managed by the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA). The fund is to be invested in critical road and power projects across the country.

“The Infrastructure for Tax Credit initiative encourages companies to commit their resources to the construction of new roads or rehabilitating old ones with the assurance that such expended resources would be recouped from company tax.

“InfraCorp is a Public Private Partnership promoted by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) and NSIA, to catalyse and accelerate investment in Nigeria’s Infrastructure sector.

“InfraCorp has a seed funding of One trillion Naira as equity from the promoters,” she said.

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Banking & Finance

Equity Market Extends Gains by N63bn; Geregu, SCOA Lead Laggards’ Table

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Equity Market Extends Gains by N63bn; Geregu, SCOA Lead Laggards’ Table

The equity market opened the week on a positive note, gaining N63 billion, 0.24 percent, as market capitalisation closed at N26.291 trillion on Monday, compared with N26.228 trillion recorded on Friday.

Also, the All-Share Index rose by 115.58 points or 0.24 percent to close at 48,270.23 from 48,154.65 on Friday.

The market’s performance was primarily driven by gains in stocks of Nigerian Breweries and BUA Cement.

Consequently, the year-to-date (YTD) return rose to 12.96 percent.

Market breadth closed positive as 15 stocks were on the leaders’ table, with 13 on the laggards’ log.

Guinness led the gainers’ table with 10 percent to close at N69.30 per share.

Eternal oil followed with a gain of 8.75 percent to close at N6.44, while Royal Exchange grew by percent to close at 78k per share.

Linkage Assurance advanced by 7.50 percent to close a 43k per share Presco gained by 6.64 percent to close at N120.50 per share.

Conversely, Geregu led the laggards’ table, depreciating by 9.85 percent to close at N110.70 per share.

Scoa Nigeria followed with a loss of 9.43 percent to close at 96k, while Thomas Wyatt Nigeria declined by 9.09 percent to close at 40k.

Also, LASSACO depreciated by 7.41 percent to close at 25k per share. Chams fell by 4.49 percent to close at 85k.

Analysis of today’s market activities showed trade turnover settled lower relative to the previous session, with the value of transactions down by 18.69 percent.

A total of 633.74 million units of shares valued at N4.10 billion were exchanged in 3,398 deals.

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Banking & Finance

NGX: Market Slides, sheds N2bn; Naira Slumps, exchanges N445.83 to Dollar 

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NGX: Market Slides, sheds N2bn; Naira Slumps, exchanges N445.83 to Dollar 

…Honeywell Flour Mill, RT Briscoe lead Losers’ Chart*** 

Key performance indicators of the Nigerian Exchange Ltd. (NGX) declined marginally on Thursday as market capitalisation which open with N25.959 trillion, lost N2 billion or 0.01 percent to close at N25.957 trillion.

Also, the All-Share Index (ASI) closed lower by 3.4 points or 0.01 percent to settle at 47,656.64 points compared with 47,660.04 recorded on Wednesday.

Consequently, the year-to-date (YTD) return stood at 11.57 percent.

Sell-offs in MTN Nigeria Stock led to a downturn in the performance of the market.

However, market sentiment, as measured by market breadth, was positive, as 11 stocks gained relative to nine losers.

UPDC Real Estate Investment Trust recorded the highest price gain of 9.09 percent to close at N3 per share.

McNichols followed with a gain of 8.93 percent to close at 61k, while Japual Gold and Ventures appreciated by 7.41 percent to close at 29k per share.

Nigerian Breweries went up by 7.14 percent to close at 45k per share.

Also, Royal Exchange Assurance rose by 4.76 percent to close at 66k per share.

On the other hand, Honeywell Flour Mill led the losers’ chart by 7.89 percent to close at N2.10, RT Briscoe followed with a decline of 7.41 percent to close at 25k and Wema Bank shed 5.45 percent to close at N3.12 per share.

FCMB Group lost 4.18 percent to close at N3.21, while Cutix Plc shed 3.46 percent to close at N2.5 per share.

Analysis of the market activities showed trade turnover settled higher relative to the previous session, with the value of transactions up by 115.63 percent.

A total of 172.90 million shares valued at N2.84 billion were exchanged in 3,073 

In another development, the Naira on Thursday exchanged at 445.83 to the dollar at the Investors and Exporters window, a depreciation of 0.12 percent, compared with the 445.30 it exchanged on Wednesday.

The open indicative rate closed at N444.60 to the dollar on Thursday.

An exchange rate of N447 to the dollar was the highest rate recorded within the day’s trading before it settled at N445.83.

The Naira sold for as low as 422 to the dollar within the day’s trading.

A total of N99.50 million was traded at the official Investors and Exporters window on Thursday

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