- Nigeria Consolidates $500m Eurobond with $1bn Issue
Nigeria disclosed on Wednesday that its $500 million notes under the $1.5 billion Global Medium Term Note programme will be consolidated to form a single series with the existing $1 billion notes, which the country issued in February and will mature by 2032.
The federal government therefore announced that it has priced its offering of the $500 million aggregate principal amount of notes at a yield of 7.5 per cent under the $1.5 billion (increased from US$1 billion) Global Medium Term Note Programme.
This, according to a statement by the Ministry of Finance, will be consolidated and form a single series with the existing $1 billion 7.875 per cent notes due in 2032.
The N1 billion notes (Original Notes) were issued on February 16. The terms and conditions of the $500 million notes, said the statement, will be identical to those of the Original Notes, paying a coupon of 7.875 per cent per annum and maturing on February 16, 2032.
They will be repayable by way of bullet repayment of the principal together with the Original Notes, the statement added.
“As with the Original Notes, the government intends to use the proceeds of the ($500 million) notes to fund capital expenditures in the 2016 budget.
“The successful pricing, which is priced 37.5bps inside the original coupon rate, demonstrates continued strong market appetite for Nigerian securities.
“This is despite continued volatility in emerging and frontier markets and shows confidence by the international investment community in Nigeria’s economic reform agenda,” the statement issued by the Director, Information, Ministry of Finance, Mr. Salisu Na’Inna Dambatta, said.
When issued, the notes will be admitted alongside the Original Notes to the official list of the UK Listing Authority and will trade on the London Stock Exchange’s regulated market.
Nigeria may apply for the notes to be eligible for trading or listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange and Financial Markets Dealers Quotations Over-the-Counter Securities Exchange.
Pricing of the notes, the statement added, comes shortly after the country unveiled its National Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (NERGP) 2017-2020 on March 7.
The plan focuses on policy objectives in five core areas: macroeconomic policy, economic diversification and growth drivers, competitiveness, social inclusion and jobs, and governance and other enablers.
Key targets under the NERGP include reaching single-digit inflation, further growth in the agricultural sector, reducing unemployment, increasing operational energy capacity and domestic refining capacity, improving transportation infrastructure, and stabilising the exchange rate, with an emphasis on implementation, monitoring and evaluation of these economic goals.
Commenting after the successful pricing, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, said: “The proceeds from this additional note issuance will go towards funding capital projects in the 2016 budget.
“Infrastructure spending is at the heart of our National Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, which was released earlier this month and guides how we will deliver the urgent reform our economy needs between now and 2020.
“Resetting the Nigerian economy is essential in order for us to deliver sustainable long term growth.”
The Director General, Debt Management Office (DMO), Dr. Abraham Nwankwo, said: “Following the success of our $1 billion note issuance in February, Nigeria is delighted to have increased our 2017 Eurobond programme to $1.5 billion and to have secured the additional $500 million.
“Nigeria was keen to take advantage of favourable market conditions and investors’ appetite for Nigerian debt to complete our foreign borrowing programme for the 2016 budget and deliver further funds for vital capital projects.”
Citi and Standard Chartered acted as Joint Lead Managers and Stanbic IBTC as Financial Advisers on this issue.
Also, the finance ministry announced that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved a licence for a wholesale Development Finance Institution (DFI) with national authorisation to the Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) Plc.
Adeosun confirmed the issuance of the licence, a statement from the ministry said on Wednesday.
According to the statement, the approval was conveyed in a letter addressed to the Managing Director/Chief Executive of Officer of DBN dated March 28, 2017.
The letter was signed by the Deputy Governor of the CBN in charge of Financial System Stability.
The approval was subject to meeting the minimum capital requirement of N100 billion, the reconstitution of the board of the bank and a review of its organogram.
The DBN was conceived in 2014, however its take off has been fraught with delays.
The Muhammadu Buhari administration inherited the project, but was determined to resolve all outstanding issues and set a target of 2017 for its take-off.
The finance minister had said previously that the DBN would have access to $1.3 billion which will be jointly provided by the World Bank (WB), KfW (German Development Bank), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the Agence Française de Development (French Development Agency).
The bank is also expected to finalise agreements with the European Investment Bank (EIB).
She also stated that the DBN would provide loans to all sectors of the economy including manufacturing, services and other industries not currently served by existing development banks, thereby filling an important gap in the provision of finance to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).
As a wholesale bank, the DBN will lend wholesale to microfinance banks, which will on-lend to medium to long-term loans to MSMEs.
MSMEs contribute about 48.47 per cent to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP), but have access to only about 5 per cent of lending from Deposit Money Banks (DMBs).
The federal government expects that the influx of additional capital from the DBN will lower borrowing rates while the longer tenure of the loans will provide the required flexibility in the management of cash flows, giving businesses the opportunity to make capital improvements and acquire equipment and supplies.
ECOWAS@46: Commission Seeks Trade Partnership With OPS To Deepen Intra-African Trade
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in commemoration of its 46th anniversary has sought partnership with the Organised Private Sector (OPS) to deepen intra-African trade and lift millions out of poverty.
This was revealed yesterday by the president of the ECOWAS Commission, Mr. Jean-Claude Brou, at a webinar organised in collaboration with the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) yesterday.
The theme of the webinar is “Optimising Sustainable Trade, Investment and Regional Economic Integration through Effective Partnership between ECOWAS Institutions and the Organised Private Sector”.
Jean-Claude, represented by Mr. Kolawole Sopola, Acting Director, Trade, ECOWAS, said the commission, in recognition of the private sector’s role, created a stronger framework to boost the sector’s capacity for enhanced trade.
He said that the commission had also adopted more than 100 regional standards with 70 others under development on some products.
Brou listed mango, cassava, textile and garments as well as information and communication technology among such products.
“The growing importance of informal trade compels the ECOWAS to create a framework expected to engender more availability and reliability of up to date information on informal trade.
“The framework also seeks to implement reform that is essential to eliminate obstacles to informal trade among others.
“It is important to improve investment, particularly, private investment, in all sectors and I stress that digitalization must be at the center of activities for economic recovery.
“Infrastructural deficit must be addressed as well as sustainable and cheaper energy for the competitiveness of products.”
“The commission is developing projects on roads, renewable energy and education, needed for private sector development; all these to lift millions in the sub-region out of poverty,” he said.
Dr. George Donkor, President of, ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID) said that many western states showed numerous hurdles to overcome as countries continue to export raw materials, therefore maintaining low levels of development.
Donkor, however, said that reforms were already underway to accelerate the capacities of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) to spur private sector development for intra-African trade.
He noted that the EBID 2025 strategy was aimed at ensuring that the private sector benefitted up to 65 percent of the $1.6 billion available facilities.
“A vibrant private sector is key in driving regional integration and securing its active participation and has the potential to create a win-win situation for all participants.
“Increasing credit to the private sector will enhance capacity and the EBID is ready with strategies to ensure that the sector’s capacity is boosted,” he said.
Also, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, said that collaboration across societal sectors had emerged as one of the defining concepts of international development in the 21st century.
He stressed the need for ECOWAS member states to work together as a bloc to take advantage of the opportunities in the African Continental Free Trade Area.
“Since the establishment of ECOWAS in 1975, various protocols and supplementary protocols regulating member countries conduct have been signed.
“Our world has limited resources — whether financial, natural, or human — and as a society we must optimize their use.
“The fundamental of a good partnership is the ability to bring together diverse resources in ways that we can together achieve more impact, greater sustainability and increased value for all.
“This is so because it emphasises the need to work together as a bloc to leverage and take advantage of the opportunities offered by the African Continental Free Trade Area.
“My Ministry will do everything possible to ensure that the vision of the commission is taken to the next level,” he said.
IMF Retains 2.5 Percent Economic Growth Estimate For Nigeria
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has retained Nigeria’s 2.5 percent economic growth forecast for 2021.
The institution said this in its World Economic Outlook (WEO) for July titled “Fault Lines Widen in the Global Recovery” released on Tuesday in Washington DC.
According to it, the slow rollout of vaccines is the main factor weighing on the recovery for Low-Income Developing Countries (LIDCs) which Nigeria is part of.
It also retained its 6.0 percent growth forecast for the global economy for 2021 and 4.9 percent in 2022, adding that though the global forecast was unchanged from the April 2021 WEO, there were offsetting revisions.
The IMF had at its 2021 Virtual Spring Meetings in April, projected a 2.5 percent growth for Nigeria’s economy in 2021, up from 1.5 percent it projected in January.
It said that in LIDCs, the overall fiscal deficit in 2021 was revised up by 0.3 percentage points from the April 2021 WEO, mainly because of the re-emergence of fuel subsidies as well as the additional COVID-19 and security related support in Nigeria.
“Still, at 5.2 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the overall fiscal deficit remains well below that of advanced and emerging market economies, reflecting financing constraints, about 60 percent of LIDCs are assessed to be at high risk of or in debt distress.
“The public debt-to-GDP ratio for 2021 is projected at 48.5 percent.
“Several LIDCs have announced an intention to restructure their debts and some have sought debt relief under the G20 Common Framework (Chad, Ethiopia, and Zambia),” it said.
On the global scene, the IMF said that uncertainty surrounding the global baseline remain high, primarily related to the prospects of emerging market and developing economies.
It added that although growth could turn out to be stronger than projected, downside risks dominated in the near term.
“On the upside, better global cooperation on vaccines could help prevent renewed waves of infection and the emergence of new variants, end the health crisis sooner than assumed, and allow for faster normalisation of activity, particularly among emerging market and developing economies.
“Moreover, a sooner-than-anticipated end to the health crisis could lead to a faster-than-expected release of excess savings by households, higher confidence and more front-loaded investment spending by firms.”
On the downside, it said growth would be weaker than projected if logistical hurdles in procuring and distributing vaccines in emerging markets and developing economies led to an even slower pace of vaccination than assumed.
The report added that such delays would allow new variants to spread, with possibly higher risks of breakthrough infections among vaccinated populations.
“Emerging market and developing economies, in particular, could face a double hit from tighter external financial conditions and the worsening health crisis, further widening the fault lines in the global recovery.
“Weaker growth would, in turn, further adversely affect debt dynamics and compound fiscal risks.
“Finally, social unrest, geopolitical tensions, cyber-attacks on critical infrastructure, or weather-related natural disasters, which have increased in frequency and intensity due to climate change could further weigh on the recovery.”
On ensuring a fast-paced recovery, the IMF said the highest priority was to ensure rapid, worldwide access to vaccines and substantially hasten the timeline of rollout relative to the assumed baseline pace.
According to it, the global community needs to vastly step up efforts to vaccinate adequate numbers of people and ensure global herd immunity.
This, it said, would save lives, prevent new variants from emerging and add trillions to the global economic recovery.
FG to Put an End to N360 Billion Annual Electricity Subsidy Payments in 2022 – Osinbajo
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Monday said the Federal Government will end an estimated N360 billion annual subsidy payments in the electricity sector in 2022. This represents a monthly subsidy payment of N30 billion.
Osinbajo disclosed this while speaking at the 14th Nigerian Association for Energy Economics/IAEE conference in Abuja on Monday.
At the conference titled “Strategic responses of energy sector to COVID-19 impacts on African economies“, the vice president, who was represented by Engr. Ahmad Zakari, the Special Assistant to the President on Infrastructure, said the federal government would be investing over $3 billion in the sector to strengthen distribution and transmission infrastructure across the nation.
He stated that the numerous efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari at ensuring the power sector plays a critical role in the growth of the nation’s social and economic well-being will materialise fully once the ongoing reform in the energy sector is complete.
He said: “Electricity tariff reforms with service-based tariff has led to collections from the electricity sector by 63 per cent, increasing revenue assurance for gas producers and stabilizing the value chain.
“It is anticipated that all electricity market revenues will be obtained from the market with limited subsidy from next year as reforms in metering and efficiency with the DISCOs continue to improve.
“Accelerated investment in transmission and distribution, over $3 billion will be out into this sub-segment of the electricity value chain that will put us on the path to delivering 10 gigawatts through the interventions of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Siemens partnership, World Bank and Africa Development Bank, and others.”
He said as the electricity sector continued to be stabilized, more power was needed for the country’s large population.
“That is why this administration continues to invest in generation to cater for our current and future needs,” he said.
Osinbajo charged the participants to come up with solutions to key energy challenges facing the country, especially with the COVID-19 pandemic and energy transition.
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