- FG Woos Investors at LSE, Unveils Afrinvest Banking Report
The Nigerian Stock Exchange in collaboration with Afrinvest has launched the 2017 edition of the annual Banking Sector Report at the London Stock Exchange, with a call that Nigeria has reopened for business.
The launch of the report was the anchor event of the 4th Nigeria Capital Markets and Banking Forum hosted by the LSE in collaboration with the NSE in partnership with Afrinvest.
According to the Group Managing Director, Afrinvest, Ike Chioke, this is the right time for foreign investors to re-engage with the Nigerian economy.
In a statement on Sunday, Chioke was quoted as elucidating the stable macroeconomic environment currently existing in Nigeria, and the extensive reforms in diverse industries that had continued to create a favourable environment for long-term investments.
He said, “We stand on the side of optimism that the glass is half full. With a population of 180 million people growing at 2.8 per cent and indicators that show positive Gross Domestic Product growth, certainly, the Nigerian economy is one to watch.
“This forum, therefore, comes at a topical moment, and we are proud to lend our voice to the international community that Nigeria is open for business. This is the time to come back.”
He added, “We have already seen strong reforms in the agriculture, power and oil and gas sectors. In addition, there have been commendable efforts to improve the ease of doing business in Nigeria, including the introduction of visa on arrival.
“We are, therefore, looking forward to building on the foundation of the stable macroeconomic environment and these reforms to develop the hard infrastructure that will culminate in extensive industrialisation.”
The Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, who was the special guest of honour, expressed his delight over the Afrinvest flagship report saying, “I would like to thank the board and management of Afrinvest for this incisive report that so clearly analyses Nigeria’s position, and does an excellent job of presenting Nigeria in its best light.”
The statement quoted him as highlighting the importance of the title of the report, ‘’Nigeria reopens for business’’, painting a picture of the country’s journey to date.
Emefiele said, “We recently found ourselves in a very difficult position with the sudden crash in crude oil prices, and there was a serious haemorrhage of foreign exchange reserves.
“Faced with the reality that we had to survive and under the leadership of the President, we were reminded that Nigeria once fed itself and thrived with revenues from agriculture. Since then, we have aggressively pursued diversification, and as we continue to look inwards, we are confident that we will increase the wealth of Nigeria. Nigeria has indeed reopened for business.”
Other dignitaries at the event were Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State; Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; the United Kingdom Secretary of State, International Development, Priti Patel; the Chief Executive Officer, NSE, Oscar Onyema; Director-General, Debt Management Office, Patience Oniha; and Executive Director, Capital Markets, NSE, Haruna Jalo-Waziri, among others.