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NCDMB Urges Collaboration in Oil, Gas Sector to Advance Economy

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The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has called for collaboration among stakeholders in the oil and gas industry to grow the economy.

The Executive Secretary, NCDMB, Mr Simbi Wabote, made the call in Yenagoa during the 2023 Nigerian Oil and Gas Opportunity Fair with the theme, ”Catalyst and Fuel for the Industrialisation of Nigeria.

Wabote said such collaboration was necessary so that the sector would contribute to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), up to double digits levels similar to other major oil producing countries.

He noted that the oil and gas sector lagged behind agriculture, trade, telecommunication and real estate in the development of the economy between 2021 and 2022.

He said that of late, the role expected of the oil and gas industry had been dwindling due to missed opportunities as a result of policy inconsistencies, deferred decisions and investments apathy.

“Just to set the context, I will like to draw your attention to the nation’s GDP growth rate between 2021 and 2022 as released by the National Bureau for Statistics (NBS).

“The NBS report noted that the total annual contribution of oil to aggregate GDP in 2022 was 5.67 per cent compared to 7.24 per cent in 2021.

“The oil sector has steadily dropped behind agriculture, trade, telecommunications and ICT, and real estate in terms of sectors that contributed the most to Nigeria’s GDP,” he said.

According to him, the reality is that Nigeria needs to drive the growth rate to double digits for her to achieve the desired level of economic advancement.

Wabote pointed out that Norway, for instance, had doubled its GDP in the last two years from $171.2 billion to $367 billion with the oil and gas sector contributing about 20 per cent followed by her hydropower.

Wabote said that in creating opportunities, the Nigeria Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act had set the minimum targets in 278 services across the value chain that could be invested in.

On his part, Gov. Douye Diri of Bayelsa, commended the executive secretary for the training and retraining of youths and women in Bayelsa.

The governor, represented by the Commissioner for Mineral Resources, Mr Ebiere Jones, said that the Federal Government had done two major programmes for youths to be skillful.

He urged the government to look into the establishment of companies that could produce pipelines in Nigeria.

He added that most youths in the state were unemployed and urged oil firms operating in the state to create opportunities for them to be trained and be skillful. (NAN)

Economy

Nigerian Banking System is Stable, CIBN Assures Nigerians

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The Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) on Wednesday reassured Nigerians that the banking system remained “safe, sound and resilient,” dispelling fears of bank liquidations.

Its president, Prof. Pius Olanrewaju, gave the reassurance in a statement in Lagos to correct misinformation and fake news that licence of more banks would be revoked.

Olanrewaju emphasised the importance of clarifying rumours that additional bank licenses would be revoked, following the regulatory action taken by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) against Heritage Bank Plc on June 3.

“We would like to allay the fears of bank customers and the general public that the assertion is false and misleading.

“The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) have debunked the claim,” the Chairman of Council, CIBN, stated.

He added that the ongoing recapitalisation process announced by the CBN aims to further strengthen the resilience of banks and their capacity to support the growth of the Nigerian economy.

“Consequently, we urge the public to continue conducting their banking services without hesitation or apprehension,” Olanrewaju said.

According to him, CIBN is committed to promoting best practices and ensuring that the sector remains safe and sound, in collaboration with other stakeholders in the ecosystem. (NAN)

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FG Secures Investment Commitments of over $30bn Across Sectors-Minister

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The Federal Government  has secured investment commitments of more than 30 billion dollars across different sectors of the economy.

Dr Doris Anite, the Minister, Industry, Trade, and Investment (FMITI), said this during her presentation at the Ministerial Sectoral News Conference to mark President Bola Tinubu’s first year in office  on Tuesday in Abuja.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that her presentation was titled “Unlocking Trade and Investment to Achieve Renewed Hope Agenda “- Key Achievements and Contributions of the ministry.

Anite said Nigeria’s investment landscape was now witnessing a significant influx of foreign capital, aligning with the Renewed Hope agenda  Tinubu.

She said in addition, the ministry was taking decisive and structured steps to attract capital investments, which would transform the nation’s homegrown enterprises and industries into global players.

“We have concluded stakeholders’ engagements with our domestic private equity and asset management firms towards the inauguration of an Investment Mobilisation Initiative aimed at increasing local and foreign investment as a catalyst for economic growth.”

The minister said in a bid to boost private equity capital formation, the Nigeria diaspora fund was initiated.

“The Nigeria diaspora remit between 20 to 25 billion dollars annually according to the World Bank, but these remittances have not been channeled intentionally to private equity.

“ Therefore, the investment initiative by my ministry is creating the platform to target, mobilise and utilise some of these funds into the productive economy.

“Our Private Equity and Asset Management firms are adept at attracting investments and the support from the Ministry is an assurance that the government is backing this investment drive.

“Government will provide the enabling environment, remove the roadblocks and red tapes to ensure that these investments thrive.”

Anite said the investment drive was not limited to only Nigerian Diasporans, but the ministry was also reaching out to all fund providers.

She said the ministry had also received support from development finance partners.

“I have no doubt that with the success of this initiative, Nigeria will witness a boom in the formation of businesses, and a strong financial and capital market.

“Nigeria will also witness the creation of a strong economic and industrial base to catalyse a one trillion dollar Gross Domestic Product (GDP) economy.”

Anite said the ministry was set to host the Nigeria Investment Summit, a platform to connect domestic and global investors to Nigeria.

“We are creating and de-risking the investment opportunities in Nigeria, and will showcase these as we inaugurate our digital dealroom which will present the investment opportunities and help facilitate the investments to happen.”

She said this had become necessary because most contracts issued in Nigeria had other jurisdictions as places for arbitration, mostly England.

“We have observed that this is so because most businesses experience delays in the arbitration and legal process for enforcing contracts.

“This red tape will be removed with the automated commercial courts, and this will boost investor confidence and increase investment flows.” (NAN) 

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Economy

Domestic Securities Market a Major Source of Funding for FG – DMO

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The Debt Management Office (DMO), says the Nigerian domestic securities market remains a major source of funding for the Federal Government.

The Director-General of the DMO, Patience Oniha, said this on Monday in Lagos at an interactive session with primary dealers in the Federal Government securities market.

According to Oniha, during COVID-19, when the international markets were closed, we were able to raise the full amount needed to fund the budget.

“Last year, we raised seven trillion Naira as new domestic borrowing. It speaks to the size of the domestic market, its resilience, and its sophistication, unlike we have in many African markets,’’ she said.

Oniha said that the 2024 budget had a deficit of six trillion Naira to be financed through new domestic borrowing.

She said that the National Assembly also approved N7.3 trillion Ways and Means for securitisation.

“Out of the new domestic borrowing of six trillion Naira, we have raised N4.5 trillion. For the Ways and Means, out of seven trillion approved for securitisation, we have raised N4.905 trillion.

“The financial sector has come a long way, and this is another strategic meeting to chart a way forward,’’ Oniha said.

Mrs Nadia Zakari, the President, Financial Market Dealers Association (FMDA), said that the Nigerian business environment was evolving and unique, necessitating such interactive sessions.

According to Zakari, such sessions are critical for both market operators and the Federal Government for them to be able to make decisions as they plan for the rest of the year.

“We stand as financial intermediaries, and we are in a very important position of interacting with other market operators, the end investors and the DMO,’’ she said. (NAN)

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