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Asian Stocks Sink to a New Low in Months

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China now

Markets across Asia plunge to a new low, erasing almost all the profits earned this year so far. China’s stocks are the most affected, plunging the most since 2007 as government stimulus failed to allay investors’ concerns regarding the world’s second-largest economy.

The shanghai composite lost 8.49 percent to 3,209.91 at 03:29:33 p.m. China’s local time. In Hong Kong, Hang Seng Mainland 100 I plunged 5.80 percent to 6,249.33 at 04:01 p.m. on Monday. S&P / Hong Kong GEM Index lost 14.65 percent to close at 424.28.

Japanese Topix 500 Index plunges the most in a single day since February 2014, losing 5.84 percent at 02:00:03 p.m. local time. Banks also declines, with embattled Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. losing 7.5 percent, while Toyota Motor Corp. lost 4.8 percent. The energy explorer Inpex Corp. dropped 3.3 percent as crude oil continues to fall, currently at $38.82 to a barrel.

According to Bloomberg “Worsening economic data and signs of capital outflows are undermining unprecedented government attempts to shore up the country’s $6 trillion stock market”.

Chen Gang, a Shanghai-based chief investment officer at Heqitongyi Asset Management Co. said “This is a real disaster and it seems nothing can stop it”

Deutsche Bank says the meltdown in global markets is “very serious” as it would dampen prospects for growth worldwide.

Since China’s unexpected currency devaluation on August 11, global stocks have lost almost $5 trillion in value with investors wary of further decline in the second-largest economy.

The U.S dollar gained 0.50 percent against the struggling Canadian dollar in the Asia session, reaching 1.3271, an 11 years peak once reached in 2004 before the global recession.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

Economy

Nigeria’s Natural Gas Production Declines Despite N250bn Intervention Fund

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Gas Plant

Despite the injection of a N250 billion intervention fund into the gas sector, Nigeria witnessed a downturn in natural gas production last year, raising concerns about the effectiveness of the financial stimulus.

The Energy Institute, in collaboration with KPMG, unveiled an industry report revealing a notable drop of 4 billion cubic feet meters in Nigeria’s natural gas production between 2021 and 2022.

While Nigeria’s gas production demonstrated consistent growth from 39 billion cubic feet meters in 2012 to 49 billion cubic feet meters in 2020, the trajectory abruptly shifted to a decline, reaching 45 billion cubic meters in 2021 and further slipping to 40 billion cubic meters last year.

The Federal Government’s intervention included a N250 billion fund, facilitated through the Central Bank of Nigeria, with N130 billion earmarked for 15 selected companies for the construction of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) conversion centers.

This initiative, part of the National Gas Expansion Program (NGEP), aimed to promote CNG as the preferred fuel for transportation and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) for domestic cooking, captive power, and small industrial complexes.

The 15 recipient companies, including prominent names like Dangote Oil Refinery, Nipco Gas Ltd, and Greenville Liquefied Natural Gas Company, received a combined N130 billion.

However, despite this financial injection, the natural gas production figures tell a different story.

Chinedu Okoronkwo, President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, expressed dissatisfaction with the exclusion of his members from the loan, stating that inclusion would have accelerated the conversion of over one million vehicles to CNG models.

The Senate Committee on Gas, chaired by Jarigbe Agom Jarigbe, has summoned the 15 companies to provide progress reports on the projects funded by the intervention.

As Nigeria aims for substantial investment in the gas value chain, these revelations raise questions about the efficacy and impact of financial interventions in the country’s critical sectors.

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Economy

Experts Urge Swift Government Action on Nigeria’s Untapped N3 Trillion Logistics Sector

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GIG Logistics- Investors King

Experts at the Courier and Logistics Management Institute conference in Lagos have emphasized the critical importance of the overlooked logistics, courier, and transport sector in Nigeria, valued at over N3 trillion.

During the event themed “Logistics Solutions and National Infrastructure Development,” the CLMI Executive Chairman, Prof. Simon Emeje, highlighted the urgent need for the federal government to prioritize this sector, which remains relatively untapped on a global scale.

Emeje underscored the sector’s significance, stating, “Any country that does not pay attention to logistics, courier, and the transport sector cannot survive.

The government must not ignore this sector because it is the bedrock of any economy.”

The logistics, courier, transport, and management industry boasts an average asset worth over N3 trillion, offering substantial potential for job creation.

Emeje emphasized that commerce is crippled without effective logistics, illustrating the importance of the sector in facilitating trade, enhancing the supply chain, creating jobs, and propelling economic growth.

Despite its undeniable importance, the Nigerian logistics sector faces hindrances such as infrastructural deficits and weak government policies, preventing it from reaching its full potential.

Emeje called for immediate attention to address these challenges and unlock the sector’s capacity to create millions of employment opportunities for Nigerian youth.

Former Minister of Communications, Barr. Adebayo Shittu, urged the institute to draft a comprehensive proposal for government adoption, offering assistance in facilitating engagement.

Both Shittu and Prof. Emeje called on the Federal Government to establish a dedicated ministry to foster an enabling environment for Courier and Logistics Management, drawing parallels to the recognition given to the entertainment industry.

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Economy

President Tinubu Seeks Senate Approval for $8.6 Billion and €100 Million Borrowing Plan

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Bola Tinubu

President Bola Tinubu’s administration has formally requested the approval of the Nigerian Senate for a borrowing plan totaling $8.6 billion and €100 million.

The request was presented to the Senate through a letter read during the plenary by the Senate President, GodsWill Akpabio.

According to the letter, the proposed funds are integral to the federal government’s 2022-2024 external borrowing plan, previously sanctioned by the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

Tinubu clarified that the projects earmarked for funding through this loan cut across diverse sectors, emphasizing their selection based on rigorous economic evaluations and their anticipated contributions to national development.

The letter highlighted, “The projects and programs in the borrowing plan were selected based on economic evaluations as well as the expected contribution to the socio-economic development of the country, including employment generation, and skills acquisition.”

The specified sectors earmarked for development include infrastructure, agriculture, health, water supply, roads, security, and employment generation, along with financial management reforms.

The borrowing plan’s comprehensive approach aims to address critical needs and propel the nation’s progress.

President Tinubu emphasized the urgency of the Senate’s approval, stating, “Given the nature of these facilities, and the need to return the country to normalcy, it has become necessary for the Senate to consider and approve the 2022-2024 external abridged borrowing plan to enable the government to deliver its responsibility to Nigerians.”

This appeal follows previous successful requests, including the National Assembly’s approval of an over $800 million loan for the National Social Safety Network Programme in August.

Also, the assembly greenlighted the 2022 Supplementary Appropriations Act of N819 million to provide palliatives to Nigerians, mitigating the impact of fuel subsidy removal.

As the deliberations unfold, the Senate’s decision on this substantial borrowing plan will play a pivotal role in shaping Nigeria’s economic trajectory.

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