China Credit Outlook Cut to Negative By Moody’s
Moody’s Investors Service lowered China credit-rating outlook to negative from stable, citing falling currency reserves, rising government debt and uncertainty over government ability to carry-out reforms.
The rating body joined other rating organizations like Standard & Poor in warning rising local debt could add pressure to the country’s rating.
“While not our base case scenario, the government’s fiscal strength would be exposed to additional weakening if underlying growth, excluding policy-supported economic activity, remained weak,” Said Moody’s in a statement released during its outlook change on Wednesday.
“In such an environment, the liabilities of policy banks would likely increase to fund government-sponsored investment, while the leverage of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) — already under stress — would rise further.”
This week, the People’s Bank of China lowered reserve requirement ratios for lenders to five years low in order to spur an economy expanding at the slowest pace in years.
“Interventions in the equity and foreign exchange markets over the past year suggest that ensuring financial and economic stability is also an objective, but there is considerably uncertainty about policy priorities,” Moody’s reiterated.
Nigeria’s Untapped Coffee Sector Holds the Key to $2 Billion Annual Revenue
Amidst declining foreign reserves and the need for alternative revenue streams, Nigeria’s overlooked coffee industry emerges as a potential powerhouse capable of contributing over $2 billion annually to foreign exchange earnings.
Industry experts emphasize the necessity for strategic investments and modernized farming practices to unlock the full economic potential of the coffee sector.
While Nigeria is not among the top 10 coffee producers in Africa, the country’s untapped coffee industry holds the promise of significant financial gains, job creation, and sustainable agricultural development.
The urgency for revitalization comes as Nigeria grapples with a decline in foreign reserves, dropping from $38.25 billion in September 2022 to $33.23 billion in the third quarter of 2023.
Salihu Imam, Chairman of the National Coffee and Tea Association of Nigeria, Oyo State, highlighted the global significance of coffee, stating, “Coffee is the second most traded/valuable of all commodities and first in Agricultural commodities in the world.”
The potential economic impact extends beyond immediate financial gains, with Nigeria positioning itself as a key player in the global coffee trade.
Despite its potential, Nigeria’s coffee exports remain modest, producing less than one million bags annually.
In contrast, Ethiopia, the largest coffee exporter in Africa, is projected to produce 8.25 million bags. Experts suggest that Nigeria, with its unique coffee varieties, could generate $2 billion annually.
Segun Lary-Lean, President of the West Africa Specialty Coffee Association, emphasized the robust global demand for coffee, comparing it to water in Western countries.
He noted the significant earnings of coffee-producing nations like Brazil, Colombia, Vietnam, and Kenya, which experienced a 17% increase in coffee earnings.
In a call to action, industry players urge the Federal Government to prioritize strategic investments, modernized farming practices, and value-added processing to harness the coffee sector’s full economic benefits.
Unlocking the potential of Nigeria’s coffee industry stands not only as a financial opportunity but as a catalyst for broader economic growth and diversification.
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