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Nigeria Spends $600m Annually on Palm Oil Importation

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The National Palm Produce Association of Nigeria (NPPAN), says Nigeria spends 600 million dollars on palm oil importation annually.

Mr Alphonsus Inyang, National President of the association stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja.

He  described the expenses as unhealthy for national development.

Inyang said the samount could be saved and injected into the economy if the palm oil sub-sector was given due attention by successive governments.

The president said that Nigeria  which was self sufficient in palm oil production in time past,  now spends  huge amount to import same product.

Inyang said in the 60s, Nigeria was number one in palm oil  production and exportation globally, controlling over 60 per cent of world palm oil.

He said that the reverse was the case at the moment as over 50 per cent of what “we consume are imported,”he said.

Inyang said at the moment the country occupies fifth position in the league of palm oil  producing countries after Indonesia, Malaysia,Thailand and Colombia.

According to him, Nigeria may lose the position to smaller countries who are investing heavily in the sector.

He said  Indonesia occupies the first position,  producing 50 million metric tons, Malaysia second with 19 million metric tons, Thailand 3.28 million and Colombia 1.9 million metric tons.

The president attributed the challenge to the negelect of the sector by successive governments.

Inyang said based on the U.S.  Department of Agriculture, Nigeria currently occupy fifth position in the league of palm oil producing countries with 1.5 per cent or 1.4 million metric tons of the world’s total output.

“Nigeria was overthrown as the world’s largest palm oil producer and exporter by Malaysia and Indonesia in 1966.

“Currently Nigeria is the largest consumer of the product in the continent, consuming approximately three million metric tons yearly.

“Domestic production stands at less than 1.4 million metric tons, leaving a deficit of over 1.6 million metric tones,’’ he said.

Inyang urged government, specifically the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to support NPPAN members  with seedlings to develop 250,000 hectares per year.

“Our members can plant up to 250,000 hectares per year through the association’s National Oil Palm Strategy Development Plan , all we want are inputs.

“Government does not need to give and develop land for us, we need seedlings, fertilisers, logistics and implements to close this gab within four years.

“We will also create new millionaires in 28 states of the federation, “he said. (NAN)

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AMCON Records Over N108bn in 2023 Financial Year

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By Tony Obiechina, Abuja 

Amidst challenging macroeconomic conditions coupled with economic headwinds, Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) achieved a remarkable triple-digit growth of 202% from NGN34.730 billion in the previous year to NGN108.433 billion in 2023.

 

This was contained in the a statement made available by Jude Nwauzor, Head of Corporate Affairs Department in Abuja on Wednesday.

 

A breakdown of this impressive achievement showed that AMCON, which is currently led by Gbenga Alade as Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer achieved a Year-on-Year (YoY) growth in profit of 212% from N34.730 billion in the financial year, which ended on December 31, 2022, to N108.

433 billion in the period ended December 31, 2023.

The report disclosed that fair valuation gains on Eligible Bank Assets (EBAs) increased to N40.9 billion in 2023 from a loss of N187.9 billion in 2022. Equity portfolio recorded 82% growth in 2023 amounting to N43 billion as compared with N7.9 billion in 2022. The significant trading gains is as result of an improved performance in the stock market.

The Corporation achieved a favourable reduction in total liabilities, from N6.282 trillion in 2022 to N5.739 trillion in 2023, primarily due to repayments of the N500 billion Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) loan. It also recorded 89% achievement of its revenue budget in 2023 as the total recovery in 2023 stood at N125.2 billion.

A breakdown of the recovery showed that AMCON achieved N81.65 billion in collections from various obligors, N17.8 billion from share sales, N15.5billion reinvestment income, N6 billion as proceed from sale of properties, N3.8 billion dividend income and N0.5 billion from rental income despite the country’s challenging economic environment, occasioned by the removal of subsidy and floatation of the naira.

The executive management said AMCON is strategically positioned to continue with the positive trajectory achieved in the year 2023, with special emphasis on improved recoveries and efficient realization of value from disposal of forfeited assets in furtherance of the Corporation’s mandate.

 The summary of the AMCON’s Financial highlight is presented below:

*Profit for the year Dec 31, 2022 – N34,730bn

*Profit for the year Dec 31, 2023 – N108,433bn

*Total comprehensive income for the year, net of tax – (2023) N106,385bn

N30,963bn (2022)

Total Assets

N1,076,144bn (2023)

N1,513,304bn (2022).

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Recapitalization ‘ll Create Stronger, more Resilient Banks – Cardoso 

By Tony Obiechina, Abuja 

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Olayemi Cardoso, has said that the Bank will continue to collaborate with relevant financial institutions, the fiscal authorities and the National Assembly to ensure a successful recapitalisation exercise, including providing adequate protection of property rights and interests of minority shareholders.

Mr. Cardoso made the pledge in London on  while speaking to stakeholders on “The Impact of the Recapitalization of Nigerian Banks” at the UK-Nigerian Chamber of Commerce.

 

The Governor, represented by the Bank’s Deputy Governor, Financial Systems Stability, Mr. Phillip Ikeazor, emphasised the event’s significance and restated the CBN’s commitment to fostering stronger, healthier, and more resilient banks capable of withstanding economic shocks and supporting the Government’s goal of achieving a GDP of US$1 trillion by 2030.

According to him, the anticipated impact of the recapitalisation programme will include an increase in banks’ lending capacity, a boost in the volume of foreign direct investment (FDI), and an increase in foreign exchange liquidity.

He said the exercise would also contribute to GDP growth, better risk management, improved credit ratings, a diversified ownership base, better governance and strategic decisions, and increased market volume and value, leading to a more vibrant equity market.

“With the recapitalisation programme, our goal is to trigger the emergence of stronger, healthier and more resilient banks,” he added.

He noted that several factors influenced the new minimum capital requirements, including macroeconomic conditions, stress test outcomes, and the need for improved risk management.  

“We will rigorously enforce our “fit and proper criteria” for prospective new shareholders, senior management, and board members of banks, and proactively monitor the integrity of financial statements, adequacy of financial resources, and fair valuation of banks’ post-merger balance sheets,” Cardoso assured.

He noted the significant opportunity it presents to engage investors, policymakers, and technocrats on the critical issue of bank recapitalisation in Nigeria. 

Mr Cardoso explained that since assuming of office in October 2023, his priorities at the CBN have included achieving monetary and price stability, maintaining a stable exchange rate, controlling inflation, and creating an enabling environment for businesses. 

He explained that the recapitalisation directive excluded retained earnings from the minimum capital requirement to simplify capital calculations and enhance transparency. He explained that the decision, rooted in the BOFIA Act 2020, aligns with international standards like Basel III and emphasises core capital elements to improve financial stability.

Reflecting on the successful 2004/5 Banking Sector Reforms, which consolidated the industry, increased capital bases, and boosted resilience against the global financial crisis, the Governor assured that the current recapitalisation initiative aims to build on these achievements. 

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NAIC Provides ₦1.014trn Insurance Cover for Agricultural Projects in Five years 

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By Tony Obiechina, Abuja

The Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC) provided insurance cover worth ₦1.014 trillion for agricultural projects across the country in the past five years.

The Managing Director of the Corporation, Mrs Folashade Joseph, who disclosed this in Abuja on Monday during a meeting with a delegation from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), said about 1.

25 million farmers were provided insurance coverage, while about ₦8.
56 billion was generated in insurance premiums over the period.

The MD said the Corporation also incurred claims totaling N3.88billion, while it settled about N3.08 billion in claims, in addition to reaching over 516,000 farming communities with its sensitization programmes for 129,000 agricultural value chain actors across the 36 states of the federation and the FCT.

She said that the comprehensive approach to the administration of agricultural insurance win the country has recorded a multiplier effects in the country’s economy, as farmers and value chain actors who received training during the sensitization programmes have gone ahead to train others, resulting in improved agricultural productivity.

“The Corporation therefore remains committed to its mission of enhancing agricultural productivity, thereby achieving food security and contributing to the overall growth and development of Nigeria,” she said.

The activities and programmes of the Corporation, the MD explained, were in alignment with the Renewed Hope Agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Administration aimed at achieving food security, economic growth and job creation, poverty eradication, inclusivity, security, access to capital across all segments, and anti-corruption goals.

In recognition of the significant impact of the Corporation on the lives of farmers in the country, Joseph said his management was ready to explore viable opportunities to collaborate with progressive agencies and organisations to consolidate on the gains.   

“It is imperative to emphasize that the Corporation is dedicated to continuously reducing the risks associated with agricultural investments in the country,” she said, adding that over the last 37 years of the nation’s independence, Nigeria has continued to effectively manage this objective.

While recognizing the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for its remarkable accomplishments in the agricultural sector, she said the Corporation was ready to partner with them, particularly in the adoption of cutting-edge technologies and innovative farming methods like hydroponics, vertical farming, and controlled environment agriculture.

She said these advancements have not only revolutionized the agriculture industry in the UAE, but have also enabled farmers to cultivate a variety of crops in a more sustainable and efficient manner as well as played a pivotal role in enhancing food security, promoting sustainable development, and diversifying the country’s economy.

The MD assured her visitors that the Corporation in particular and Nigeria at large was open to partnership with UAE in all of these areas to produce enough for Nigeria and exports.

Assuring that the investments by foreigners in Nigeria were safe with the Corporation as Nigeria’s leading agricultural insurer, she said NAIC would continue to play a pivotal role in providing risk management solutions to farmers, agribusinesses, and other stakeholders across the agricultural value chain.

“Our comprehensive range of insurance products and services are designed to mitigate the impact of various risks, including crop failure, livestock mortality, and property damage, thereby safeguarding the livelihoods and investments of our clients.

“The Corporation is therefore fully committed to supporting initiatives that promote agricultural development, enhance food security, and strengthen the resilience of farmers, especially the smallholders in Nigeria.

“The Corporation is ready to engage in fruitful discussions to identify concrete opportunities for partnership with the UAE, believing that by joining forces and pooling our collective strengths, we can achieve greater impact and make significant strides towards advancing agricultural development and food security objectives in both our countries,” she said.

“The challenge of food security is indeed a significant one, but I am filled with hope and optimism that together, through our collective commitment, innovative thinking, and strategic collaboration, we can overcome and ensure that safe and nutritious food is readily available to our citizens,” the MD said.

 She acknowledged the potential for collaboration between Nigeria and the UAE, and said the Corporation was committed to collaborate and explore opportunities toward mutually beneficial partnerships between the two countries to leverage their respective expertise, resources, and networks.

The leaders of the UAE delegation who is the Chief Executive Officer of the Vice President’s Office for Political Affairs in the kingdom of the UAE, Khalid Al Mannaei, said they were in Nigeria to hold discussions and explore opportunities for partnership and collaboration with key players in strategic sectors of the country’s economy, including the agricultural sector.

He said the meetings and consultations would culminate in a series of bilateral relations agreements aimed at fostering mutually beneficial cooperation and partnerships affecting the economies of the two countries, particularly on agricultural production and food security initiatives.

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