The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has opened a three-month window from June 3 to September 2, for customers across the country to replace their mutilated naira notes with new ones across all banks.
The new order is as a result of its resolve to finally replace mutilated, old naira notes in Nigeria, after the failure of banks to heed previous directives.Director, Corporate Communications, CBN, Isaac Okoroafor, disclosed this over the weekend in Lagos, at a CBN sensitisation session with stakeholders in the Southwest, including labour unions, on the direction of the economy.
Okoroafor said CBN has set up departments to listen to customers’ complaints if banks refused to heed the order, adding that the move became imperative due to infractions noticed from some banks in the way new notes are being handled.
He said CBN has been replacing lower denominations across the country by going through the local markets and transport unions instead of the banks, because of the approach of some banks to the issue.He said the cashless policy, which was stopped due to infrastructure deficits will soon return, as telecommunication firms have been empowered to become Payment Service Banks (PSB).He listed the achievements of the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, which enabled him to renew his mandate to continue to lead the nation’s economy to the path of greatness.
Vice President, Industrial Global Union, Issa Aremu, commended CBN’s initiative in revamping the economy, and called on the Governor to continue his developmental mission by ensuring inflation rate is reduced to a single digit level.He urged Emefiele to continue his defence of the CBN autonomy, while commending President Muhammadu Buhari for reappointing the governor.
Nigeria’s central bank governor Monday said the country’s economy remains fragile, about two years it exited a harsh economic recession.
Godwin Emefiele, who resumed as the CBN governor for a second term at the beginning of June, said it still not all rosy for Africa’s most populous country.
He made the comment in Abuja where he is unveiling a five year-monetary policy roadmap for the apex bank, Reuters reported.
Similar thoughts was also shared by the former chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, Abdulaziz Yari.
Yari warned that Nigeria may head for another economic recession due to the decline in oil price.
Yari projected that the vital oil industry maybe hit by another weaker global prices, which has fallen from highs of about $112 a barrel in 2014 to below $75 at the moment.
“We are expecting the possibility of another cycle of recession by mid-2020 and which may last up to third quarter of 2021,” he said during the opening ceremony of an induction programme for newly-elected and returning governors in April.
Nigeria’s economy receded at the end of Q2 in 2016 after falling oil prices ate deep into the country’s earnings and caused the naira to weaken thereby causing inflation to spiral upward. Spates of attacks on oil installations in the Niger Delta by militants, who were protesting for better deals from the government, almost crippled oil production.
It exited recession in 2017 after suffering contraction for five consecutive quarters.
Critics say government policies made a bad situation even worse. The decision to delay devaluing Nigeria’s currency meant many businesses struggled to get foreign currency to pay for imports, which had a worse effect on the entire economy.
The slump in global oil prices hit Nigeria hard with the government getting about 70% of its revenues from oil sales.
Climate financing by the world’s largest multilateral development banks (MDBs) in developing countries and emerging economies rose to an all-time high of $43.1 billion in 2018, boosting projects that help developing countries cut emissions and address climate risks.
This represents an increase of more than 22 per cent from the previous year, where climate finance totalled $35.2 billion.
The latest MDB climate finance figures are detailed in the 2018 joint Report on Multlateral Development bank’s climate Finance, which combines data from the African Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Investment Bank (EIB), the Inter-American Development Bank Group (IDBG) and the World Bank Group (WBG). These banks account for the vast majority of multilateral development finance globally.
The 2018 report also summarises information on climate finance from the Islamic Development Bank ISDB), which joined the MDB climate finance tracking groups in October 2017.The report shows that $ 30.2 billion, or 70 per cent, of the total financing for 2018 was devoted to climate change mitigation investments that aim to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions and slow down global warming.
The remaining $ 12.9 billion, or 30 per cent, was invested in adaptation efforts to help address mounting impacts of climate change, including worsening droughts and more extreme weather events from extreme flooding to rising sea levels.
Since 2011, when the six MDBs initiated joint reporting, they have committed nearly $237 billion in climate finance for developing and emerging economies.
Climate funds channelled to these countries through MDBs, such as the Climate Investment Funds (CIF), the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Trust Fund, the Global Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fund (GEEREF), the European Union’s funds for Climate Action, and the Green Climate Fund GCF), play an important role in boosting MDB climate financing.
In addition, as well as the $43.1 billion of MDB finance in 2018, MDBs report another $68.1 billion in net climate co-finance – investments from the public and private sector – adding up to total climate finance for the year of $111.2 billion.
“In 2018, the African Development Bank achieved parity between adaptation and mitigation finance for the first time. While adaptation finance from MDBs increased in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2018 compared to 2017, a lot more needs to be done globally to close the huge adaptation financing gap in Africa, estimated between $ 7-14 billion per year by 2020”, noted Anthony Nyong, Director for Climate Change and Green Growth at the African Development Bank.
The regions of Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and South and East Asia were the top three to invest MDB climate finance. The report also breaks down climate finance by MDB, economy size, sector, type of recipient and type of financial instrument.
MDBs’ provision of climate finance helps to ensure global financial flows are consistent with development with low greenhouse gas emissions and are resilient to climate change, in line with the Paris Agreement’s aim to limit the increase in global temperatures to well below 2°C, pursuing efforts for 1.5°C.
The major bane of development in Lagos State remains the failure of government to enforce town planning laws, a professional in the built environment, Mr James Anifowose has said.
Anifowose, who is a resident of Lekki, said most of the problems in the state ranging from flooding to building collapse and even traffic congestion were as a result of lack of proper planning.
According to him, the fundamental issue remains that the government sets the rules and breaks them at will.
Using Lekki Phase 1 and Magodo Government Reserved Area as examples, he said there had been flagrant abuse of master plan by both the government and residents without any consideration for the consequences.
He said, “The problem of town planning in Lagos is greed, so why should we believe in the government when they say they are reviewing a master plan? There is no problem with the change of land use but it must be done with the consent of relevant stakeholders.
“As far back as the 1850s, Lagos was already an established city with electricity; it was the second city in the world to have electricity after Munich, Germany but how do you treat a city as old as that without responsibility and accountability? The state’s problem is social and one of the key fundamentals of social problems is governance.”
He explained that the gridlock which had become synonymous with living in Lagos was as a result of lack of futuristic planning.
Anifowose, who spoke as a concerned resident of the state, said the government owed the people a duty to as a matter of urgency open a public enquiry into the abuse of master plan in the state.
“We have a big social problem but the people do not even understand the dynamics; we are not even sure how many we are in the state, so how can the government plan?’ he asked.
He noted that Lekki’s status as a residential area had been bastardised due to a change in the original master plan, adding that the area had a specific plan for a Central Business District, a Northern Business District and residential area, but that every part of the community had been converted to commercial use.
According to him, the police station planned for Lekki Phase 1 has not been built and residents have no idea what has become of the plan as the designated area has been converted to residential use.
He said the new governor of the state, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, should intervene in the crisis as the New Town Development Authority had lost control.
“His intervention will have huge benefits for the state. Master plan is a future plan; if it fails the system will fail too. What is happening now in Lagos is as a result of planning failure,” he added.
The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has advised the federal government to re-examine the mandate of the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON).
The association made this recommendation on the premise that substandard goods have flooded the Nigerian market despite statutory fees paid to the SON.
MAN had, on Wednesday, paid an advocacy visit to President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Aso Rock, Abuja.
“SON is the sole agency saddled with the responsibility of ensuring only legitimate products are allowed into Nigeria,” it said in a document made available to TheCable where the submissions made to the president were listed.
“Unfortunately, presently in Nigeria, there are multibillion-naira value of various substandard products freely being traded in Nigerian markets and causing the collapse of many Nigerian industries.
“It is the statutory operating standard of SON to issue Product Certificate (PC) to Offshore Exporters to Nigeria for a Fee in order to confirm standards of products being exported into Nigeria and also issue Standards Organization of Nigeria Conformity Assessment Program (SONCAP) to the importer for a Fee to validate that products being shipped meet NIS Standards.
“Despite the payment of these statutory fees by Offshore Exporters and Nigerian importers, Nigerian markets today are increasingly dominated by substandard imported products constantly sabotaging the economy and running down many industries such like Textile, Tyres, Cable and recently Steel.
Using aluminium products as an example, MAN alleged that aluminium with thickness as low as 0.25mm are being imported while the approved minimum thickness for local manufacturers is 0.40mm.
“Similarly, the approved minimum thickness for aluminium profile manufactured in the country is 1mm whereas imported profiles with gauges as low as 0.7mm thickness have flooded the markets,” the document signed by Mansur Ahmed (pictured), MAN president, said.
“These unfair trade practices are having a devastating effect on aluminium manufacturers, as many have shut down operations with others on the waiting wing.”
The association also said that it has sent a list of 93 items to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to add to the list of items banned from accessing forex.
On the proposed increase of value-added tax, the association said: “We are concerned that any increase in VAT at this period when household consumption is barely recovering will have a depressing effect on the economy at large.
“VAT directly limits the purchasing power of consumers and their choice of products; creates a greater market for smuggled goods; lowers consumption; decreases capacity and production frontier of the economy; and may lower government revenue.”
MAN advised that the Federal Inland Revenue (FIRS) put in place a structure that will take more taxes from the poor by increasing VAT on luxury goods.
Luxury home prices are generally declining in many of South Africa’s most sought-after suburbs, and sellers are more willing to negotiate.
Citing recent FNB statistics, the property group noted that the rate of home price growth on the Atlantic Seaboard – South Africa’s most expensive area – has dropped from a high of 25.5% in the first quarter of 2016 to -5.1% in the first quarter of 2019.
“The rate of home price growth on the Atlantic Seaboard, which is South Africa’s most expensive area, has fallen from a high of 25.5% in the first quarter of 2016 to -5.1% in the first quarter of this year,” said Rory O’Hagan, head of the luxury portfolio division of the Chas Everitt International property group.
“House prices in the Southern Suburbs, including areas like Constantia, Bishopscourt, Newlands and Claremont are currently declining at the rate of 2.4% a year, after reaching a peak annual growth rate of 15.4% in 2015.”
O’Hagan said that he has seen similar drops in Gauteng and other parts of the country.
In Hyde Park, for example, brand new cluster homes that were on for sale at R28 million are now priced at R20 million, and a home originally listed for R19 million is now available for R15 million, he said.
“Our luxury portfolio teams in estates such as Val de Vie in the Cape Winelands and Zimbali on the KZN North Coast report a similar trend, with asking prices on specific homes dropping in the past month from R16.9 million to R13 million; from R15.9 million to R12 million; and from R13.9 million to R11.5 million.”
O’Hagan said that for luxury buyers planning to upgrade to a bigger property can acquire more home for their money in the current market. He said that appetite for luxury property around the world – including South Africa – is currently also being boosted by volatility in equity markets, which traditionally prompts investors to turn to brick and mortar.
“Locally, it seems that there may be an interest rate cut in July which would further boost demand but as things stand, we are already seeing a positive response to the lower prices in many of our heritage suburbs,” he said.
However, he noted that sales have been more muted in the country’s estates. “But our teams report increasing interest and we believe they will shortly also start to show a significant upturn in sales, especially following the assurances given in the state of the nation that there will be no interference with the independence of the Reserve Bank and that land reform will take place in an orderly manner,” O’Hagan said.
In his first state of the nation address since the ANC won May’s general election in South Africa, President Cyril Ramaphosa described the youth unemployment rate of 50% as a national crisis.He pledged to create two million jobs for young people over the next decade.
He listed economic growth, job creation as well as improving education and health as the country’s top priorities.
He also promised to support the country’s struggling electricity utility, Eskom.
But Ramaphosa dared the country to dream.
He said he wants to build a bullet train and like China construct a new smart city.
The leader of the opposition Mmusi Maimane reacted by saying that the president wants to dream but when he wakes up he will realize that we live in a nightmare.
During a meeting on June 19th, 2019, the Board of Directors of Julius Berger Nigeria Plc announced the appointment of Engineer Goni Musa Sheikh as a Non-Executive Director of the construction firm.
According to a notice by Julius Berger Plc to the Nigerian Stock Exchange dated June 20th and signed by the Company Secretary Mrs Cecilia E. Madueke, it was disclosed that Mr Sheikh’s appointment would take effect on 1st July, 2019.
Goni Musa Sheikh’s Profile: He was appointed Mining Engineer I at the Nigerian Mining Corporation (NMC), Jos, Plateau State in 1980. From 1980 to 1990, Sheikh was involved in the design, development, and executions of many mineral projects like gold, barytes, cement, feldspar, talc, bentonite, tin ores, soda ash, tantalite, lead/zinc sulphides, diatomite and kaolin.
In 1990, he became the General Manager/Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Kaolin Limited (a subsidiary of Nigerian Mining Corporation, Jos).
He rose in 2000 to the post of General Manager, Corporate Infrastructure and Projects of the Nigerian Mining Corporation, Jos, where he oversaw all the operations and development of new projects of the Corporation.
Between 2000 and 2006, he was the Executive Director of the Bitumen Project, Akure. Sheikh held several positions in Government including Director, Mines Inspectorate Department; Director, Mining Cadastre Office; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Mines and Steel Development; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, and Permanent Secretary, Ecological Fund Office.
He was appointed Special Technical Assistant to the Minister of Mines and Steel Development in 2006. Here, Sheikh spearheaded the technical report preparations and investment drive in INDABA South Africa and PDAC Canada. He served two ministers in this capacity.
He had been Nigeria’s representative at many international conferences, served on many boards and worked closely with different international organisations and blue chip companies.
He was the Nigeria Governor for OPEC for almost three years, later becoming the Chairman, Board of Governors of OPEC.
Before his appointment at Julius Berger, Mr Sheikh was a board member of the Nigerian LNG, Bonny Gas Transport and the National representative of African Petroleum Producers Association (APPA).
Sheikh retired as a Federal Permanent Secretary after putting in 35 meritorious years of service and is currently engaged in Consultancy works in Oil, Gas and Mining.
A recipient of many academic awards, Sheikh is a Fellow of Nigerian Society of Mining Engineers and Member of Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), The Council of Registered Engineers of Nigeria (COREN), Council of Mining Engineers and Geoscientists and Nigerian Mining and Geosciences Society.
Julius Berger stock opened on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange today at N20.9 per share.