- CBN Approved Special Forex Sale for Airlines, Others
The Central Bank of Nigeria has approved a special secondary market intervention retail sales of foreign exchange for airlines operating in the country.
According to a statement from the aviation arm of the Federal Ministry of Transportation on Friday, the arrangement is dedicated to the clearance of the backlog of matured foreign exchange obligations.
Also to benefit from the intervention, according to the ministry, are importers of raw materials and machineries for manufacturing companies and agricultural chemicals.
The statement noted that the implication of the intervention was that the CBN would not apply the Clause 2.4.3 (i) of the Revised Guidelines for the Operation of the Nigerian Interbank Foreign Exchange Market, which provides that “all SMIS bids shall be submitted to the CBN through the FXPDs.”
The ministry stated that consequently, the CBN shall receive bids from all the authorised dealers and would also not apply the relevant provisions under clause 2.4.3 (i) of the guidelines, which provide that “spot forex sold to any particular end-user shall not exceed one per cent of the overall available funds on offer at each SMIS session.”
Reacting to the development, the Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, described the special intervention by the central bank as a great relief for airline operators who had complained bitterly over their inability to access the required foreign exchange to settle their backlog of obligations.
This, he said, had adversely affected their operations.
Sirika noted that he apex bank had taken the right decision that would not only strengthen the existing airlines, but also inspire confidence in aspiring operators in Nigeria’s aviation industry.
According to the minister, the development is coming after intervention by the Federal Government through the Ministry of Aviation on behalf of the foreign airlines and domestic operators under the aegis of the Airlines Operators of Nigeria.
“This is after much intervention on behalf of the airlines, both foreign and domestic. The central bank has yielded and we are happy because this means a lot to us and the airlines. They have been going through a lot and we are so happy that this will be a huge succour to their operations,” he said.
He said airline operators in the country had been affected by their inability to access forex to settle their backlog of obligations, adding that their operations had been adversely affected in the process.
Describing the sector as critical to economic growth, Sirika said the CBN had taken the right step to strengthen the airlines.
The CBN had said in a circular to the concerned sectors that the intervention would further engender market confidence, ensure access to forex by end users and sustain the integrity of the interbank forex market.
Julius Berger Diversifies into Agro-processing
Julius Berger Steps into Agro-processing to Seize Diversification Opportunity
Julius Berger, a leading construction company in Nigeria, said its board of directors has approved a diversification opportunity for the firm in agro-processing.
The approval was done at a meeting held on September 22, the company stated in a statement filed with the Nigerian Stock Exchange on Thursday.
Julius Berger said the approval would help the company capitalised on diversification opportunities in the agro-processing industry, especially with the emerging developments in Nigeria and government ongoing reforms to make the nation self-sufficient.
The statement read in part: “We would advise the exchange and the capital market that the Board of Julius Berger at its meeting held on September 22, 2020 approved a diversification opportunity for the company in agro-processing.
“The Board of Directors and the executive management of Julius Berger strongly believes that this diversification direction would support the continued success of the group in the future and align with the strategic objective of the government to stimulate value creation in Nigeria.”
However, Julius Berger reiterated its commitment to maintaining and strengthening its leadership in the nation’s construction sector.
Some Nigerians Are Charging Ship Owners Illegal $36,000 Per Month for Secure Anchorage
Ship Owners Are Paying Illegal $36,000 Per Month for Secure Anchorage in Nigeria
Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation, on Thursday said certain people are charging ship owners illegal $1,200 per day for secure anchorage in Nigeria.
The minister registered his displeasure with continuous patronage of illegal harbours known within the circle as secure anchorage areas.
Amaechi, who spoke at the ‘2020 World Maritime Day Celebration which held at Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos’ said the issue was unsettling.
He said, “There is a crisis in the maritime sector. The crisis is on the issue of security.
“Today, we have a single individual partnering with the military that is collecting $1,200 to the detriment of shipping companies.
“That one individual is still managing the business with support of other institutions.”
The minister also accused stakeholders of doing nothing to these individuals, saying only the government had the right to step up secure anchorage area
174,574 Persons Apply For COVID-19 Support Fund Within 48 Hours
Survival Fund: 174,574 Persons Apply For COVID-19 MSME Support
More Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) has applied for Federal Government financial support under the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan.
According to the agency in charge of the program, within 48 hours of opening the registration portal of N75 billion National Survival Fund, a total of 174,574 applications were successfully registered for both the Guaranteed Off-take Stimulus and Survival Fund schemes.
The schemes were instituted to support businesses and individuals negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mariam Katagum, Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, on Thursday in Abuja said as at “8.30am this (Thursday) morning, total successful registrations stood at 174,574.”
She further stated that “the following states have the highest applications as follows, Kano, 19,895; Kaduna, 13,575; Lagos, 13,640; Katsina: 8,383; Federal Capital Territory, 8,085.”
Katagum said about 138,000 applications were registered within the first 24 hours of opening the portal, these applicants created profiles and completed the first stage of registration with Kano, Kaduna and Lagos emerging as lead states.
She explained that all successful applicants were sent SMS and email verification with a list of requirements for the second stage of application which would commence on October 1, 2020.
“Applicants will be required to upload details supporting their applications which will be verified and if successful, approved for disbursements,” the minister stated.
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