- 2019 Elections: CBN to Monitor Banks’ Lending to Politicians
The Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday said it would monitor the rate at which banks provide loans to politicians to finance their campaign spending ahead of the 2019 general elections.
The Governor of the CBN, Mr Godwin Emefiele, disclosed this while briefing journalists shortly after a two-day Monetary Policy Committee meeting which were held at the headquarters of the apex bank in Abuja.
Responding to a question on what steps the apex bank was taking to check excessive lending by banks to politicians, the governor said that the CBN would be monitoring their activities with a view to intervening when things are about to go wrong.
He expressed optimism that due to past experiences, Deposit Money Banks would not want to take excessive risks by increasing their lending exposure to politicians.
Emefiele said that while banks have their own risk assessment criteria, the apex bank would be closely monitoring their activities so as to protect the banking sector.
He said that the CBN had met with chief executives of banks and during the meeting; they were warned on the dangers of involving in money laundering activities.
The CBN boss said that for any bank that is caught in money laundering activities; the apex bank would not hesitate to impose the appropriate sanction on such bank.
He said, “We have had meetings with the banks and we have asked them to be very careful on money laundering issues, and I believe they will be careful themselves because they know that if they are caught, it means that they will be heavily penalised.
“When you talk about lending to politicians, banks have their risk acceptance criteria and I don’t think that the banks would do that at this time. Everybody must have learnt their lessons.
“We at the Central Bank we are watching. When things go wrong or about to go wrong, we will deal with it as appropriately as possible.”
On the MTN $8.1bn controversy, he said that apex bank had met with top executives of the company who came in from South Africa on the issue.
He said very soon, a final decision of the apex bank on the matter would be announced.
He gave some of these risks as destruction of agricultural products from flooding, insurgency in the North-East, herdsmen and farmers’ crises, high cost of energy, anticipated spending in the run up to the Christmas festivities and campaign relates spending towards the upcoming general elections.
He said there was need to come up with measures to address these challenges as well as to ensure speedy implementation of the budget.
On the issue of minimum wage, the CBN governor explained that the increase in wages would boost aggregate demand in the economy.
Emefiele also said the apex bank was working on a new initiative to channel the flow of credit to small businesses in the rural areas.
He said, “The committee urged the bank to deepen and broaden access to finance to high employment elastic sector with particular emphasis on small and medium enterprises.
“The committee called on the bank to extend the success recorded under the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme to other items including fish and palm oil by introducing more stringent measures to curb access to foreign exchange for products that can be produced in Nigeria.”
Nigeria’s Presidential CNG Initiative Allocates N100bn for CNG Buses and EV Adoption
The Presidential Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Initiative has allocated N100 billion to expedite the deployment of CNG buses nationwide, according to a statement released on Wednesday.
The initiative, designed to catalyze an Auto-gas and Electric Vehicle (EV) revolution in mass transit and transportation, aims to enhance sustainability and cost-effectiveness.
The statement revealed that the fund would be instrumental in supporting the adoption of auto-gas and electric vehicles, signaling a commitment to a more sustainable and economical future in the transportation sector.
The Presidential CNG Initiative plans to leverage over 11,500 CNG and electric-fueled vehicles, along with the deployment of 55,000 conversion kits.
This strategic approach is intended to reduce transportation costs for Nigerians and mitigate the challenges posed by the rising cost of living.
Under the Renewed Hope Agenda, the Presidential CNG Initiative is dedicated to realizing the President’s vision, guided by its steering committee led by FIRS Chairman Zacch Adedeji.
The statement highlighted recent achievements, including strategic technical partnerships and the ongoing commissioning of CNG Conversion centers in key states such as Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna, Ogun, and Rivers.
Several more centers are slated for commissioning in the coming weeks, reflecting the initiative’s momentum and commitment to achieving its objectives.
Nigeria’s Power Transformation: 53 Projects Worth N122bn on Track for May 2024 Completion
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in collaboration with the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) and power distribution companies, is set to complete 53 power projects by May next year.
Valued at N122 billion, these projects aim to add over 1,000 megawatts to TCN’s wheeling capacity.
During a recent tour of three ongoing projects in Lagos, TCN’s Programme Coordinator, Mathew Ajibade, assured that the projects were not abandoned, refuting speculations.
He confirmed that work is progressing smoothly and is expected to be completed by May 2024, as initially planned.
Assistant Director/Head of Infrastructure Finance Office at the CBN, Tumba Tijani, highlighted the CBN’s support for the power sector, revealing that the bank released a loan at a 9% interest rate in August last year for the projects.
The funding, part of the Nigeria Electricity Market Stabilisation Facility-3, amounts to N122,289,344 and aims to address transmission/distribution bottlenecks, enhance supply to end-users, and unlock unutilized generation capacity.
Tijani disclosed that N85.43 billion has been disbursed into the Advance Payment Guarantee account of the 53 contractors responsible for executing the projects.
The comprehensive project list includes the delivery of power transformers, re-conductoring existing transmission lines, upgrading existing substations, and constructing 33KV line bays.
The initiative reflects a concerted effort to enhance Nigeria’s power infrastructure and meet growing energy demands.
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.
Business3 weeks ago
Nigeria’s Logistics Sector Holds Untapped N3tn Potential, Says Courier and Logistics Management Institute
Black Market Rate3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 14th November 2023
News3 weeks ago
Millionaire Powerplay Limited Unveils Unprecedented Odds in American Lotto’s Instant Cashless Payout
Black Market Rate4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 9th November 2023
Forex3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 16th November 2023
Forex4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 10th November 2023
Forex4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 8th November 2023
Black Market Rate2 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 21st November 2023