- Govt Releases N965.2m to 79,852 SIWES Beneficiaries
The Federal Government has commenced moves to clear the backlog of the Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme with the release of N965.2m to 79,852 students from 136 tertiary institutions across the country.
The Director-General, Industrial Training Fund, Mr. Joseph Ari, gave the figure in Abuja while speaking on the activities of the agency since his assumption of office in September last year.
He said that a new operational guideline was being worked on by all the regulatory agencies of the scheme to improve its level of funding.
SIWES is a skills training programme established in 1973 and designed to expose and prepare students of universities and other tertiary institutions to the industrial work situation they are likely to face after graduation.
The scheme has in recent times been experiencing challenges owing to limited budgetary provisions by the Federal Government, a development that has made it difficult to pay the participants.
Before the release of the N965.2m, the funding gap, according to the ITF, was about N8.8bn.
The ITF DG said the current economic situation in the country had necessitated a need to review the funding model of the scheme in order to ensure its sustainability.
“During the period of October to December 2016, under our quick wind, we paid N965.22m to 79,852 students from 136 tertiary institutions across the country,” Ari explained.
He also said the ITF had released the sum of N2.2bn to 277 companies as training reimbursement claims, adding that the agency was focussing on the provision of employable skills in areas where Nigerians had comparative advantage.
The ITF boss stated, “Empirical evidence from several skills gap surveys has revealed that despite soaring unemployment, especially among the youth, vacancies still exist that are currently filled by persons other than Nigerians.
“To redress this trend, it became imperative to align the functions of the Fund with the Federal Government’s policy thrust of economic diversification and industrialisation.”
He said during the first quarter of this year, ITF would train 18,000 youths under its National Industrial Skills Development Programme.
Ari added that a total of 14 million Nigerians had been equipped with employable and entrepreneurial skills during the 45 years of existence of the agency.
FG Borrows N2.36 Trillion from Capital Market in 2020
Mr. Oscar Onyema, the Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Stock Exchange, said the Federal Government borrowed N2.36 trillion from the nation’s capital market in 2020.
The CEO disclosed this at the 2020 market recap/2021 outlook held on Tuesday.
He said the Federal Government issuances account for 92 percent of the total bond issued in the market in the year.
Onyema further explained that corporate organisations leveraged on low yield environment to expand and embark on debt refinancing, raising a total of N192 billion,
“Capital-raising activities in the fixed income market increased significantly in 2020. The NSE’s bond market capitalisation rose by 35.52 per cent from N12.92tn in 2019 to N17.50tn,” he said.
Onyema noted that “The year 2020 was indeed a historic one for global capital markets. Facing buffeting headwinds, world markets saw sharp swings and steep losses, but largely remained resilient and orderly amid rising uncertainty.
“For The Exchange, renewed investor optimism coupled with improved economic conditions and low fixed income yields, propelled a year end bull run. Of 93 global equity indices tracked by Bloomberg, the NSE All Share Index emerged the best-performing index in the world, surpassing the S&P 500 (+16.26 per cent), Dow Jones Industrial Index (+7.25 per cent) and other global and African market indexes, to post a one-year return of +50.03 per cent.”
Speaking on product results for the year, the CEO said, “The Nigerian equities market got off to a strong start in 2020, returning 10.4 per cent by the eighth trading session. By October, the equities market entered a much-awaited bull run.
“Buoyed by the formal declaration of the US president-elect, unattractive fixed income yields and better-than-expected corporate earnings, the NSE ASI recovered from Q1’20, to close the year at 40,270.72 (+50.03 per cent) and erase losses of -14.90 per cent recorded in 2019.
“During its remarkable year end run, the ASI gained 6.23 per cent in a single trading session which triggered a 30-minute halt of trading on all stocks for the first time since the NSE Circuit Breaker was introduced in 2016 to safeguard market integrity in periods of extraordinary volatility.
“At the close of the year, the NSE’s equity market capitalisation was up by 62.42 per cent, from N12.97tn in 2019 to N21.06tn in 2020 while market turnover saw an uptick of 7.25 per cent, from N0.96tn in 2019 to N1.03Tn in 2020.
“Although Initial Public Offering activity was mute, the value of supplementary issues increased dramatically from 2019, rising by 851.37 per cent to N1.42tn, from N148.77bn.
“Also noteworthy is that for the second consecutive year, equity market transactions were dominated by domestic investors who accounted for 65.28 per cent of market turnover by value (retail: 44.98 per cent; institutional: 55.02 per cent) while foreign portfolio investors accounted for 34.72 per cent.”
Airtel to Announce Financial Results for Nine Months Ended December 31, 2020 on 29 January 2021
Airtel Africa, one of the leading telecommunications companies in Africa, on Wednesday announced it will report its financial statements for the nine months ended December 31, 2020 on January 29, 2021.
The telecom giant disclosed in a statement signed by Simon O’Hara, Group Company Secretary.
The statement reads “Airtel Africa, a leading provider of telecommunications and mobile money services, with a presence in 14 countries across Africa, will announce its results for the nine months to 31 December 2020 on 29 January 2021.
“Management will host a conference call on the day of results for analysts and investors at 2:00pm GMT.
“Participants are requested to pre-register for the call by navigating to:
“Once registered, participants will receive a calendar invitation with the dial in details for the call.”
Global Credit Rating Affirms Sovereign Trust Insurance A Rating
Global Credit Rating, an international rating agency based in South Africa, has affirmed Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc A rating in its latest report released for the month of December 2020.
In a statement released through the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Global Credit Rating noted “that the Company has shown a great deal of consistency in her claims paying obligations to her numerous customers spread all over the country.
The Report further stated that “the listing of the Rights Issue in 2019 helped in increasing the Shareholders’ funds of the Company by 33.8%, to N7.8b by the end of the Financial year in 2019 as against the figure of N5.8b in 2018.
“Subsequently, by the third quarter of 2020, the Shareholders’ funds had increased to N8.2b which also translated to a 31% increase in the corresponding period of 2019 with a figure of N6.3b. In the Rating Agency’s opinion, Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc is strong in liquidity with more than adequate claims coverage that compares well to industry averages.
“The capital adequacy of the Underwriting Firm is considered strong according to the rating report and this is underpinned by the sizeable capital base catering for the quantum of insurance and market risks assumed. In this regard, the ratio of Shareholders’ funds to NEP, (Net Earned Premium) improved to 189.2% in the Q3 of 2020 as against 130.9% in the corresponding quarter of 2019.
In terms of peer-to-peer performance comparison, “Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc did very well when compared with other selected insurers in terms of Capital, Total Assets, Gross Premium Income (GPI) and Net Premium Income (NPI).”
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