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NNPC Embarks on Healthcare Venture to Reduce Medical Tourism

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  • NNPC Embarks on Healthcare Venture to Reduce Medical Tourism

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has teed-off a major national healthcare intervention project designed to halt medical tourism to foreign destinations through the provision of state-of-the-art hospitals and diagnostic centres across the country.

Details of the medical venture plans published in the Q3 2018 Edition of the NNPC Magazine indicated that the corporation has set a five-year gestation period for the project to achieve substantial impact in Nigeria’s healthcare delivery system.

The NNPC quarterly publication reported that the healthcare project is in three parts. The first is Occupational Health designed to specifically service NNPC staff, their dependents and retirees. All current NNPC clinics fall under this scheme and are presently being upgraded to reflect the new realities.

The second scheme involves some key NNPC hospitals like the erstwhile Abuja International Diagnostic Centre (AIDC) and the Benoni Hospital in Benin City which are being equipped to service both NNPC staff and outsiders because of their projected excess capacity.

The third leg of the medical project which has been designated as ‘new business’ involves locations where state-of-the-art hospitals and diagnostic centers will be constructed on NNPC unutilized lands in Kaduna, Mosimi and Port Harcourt for commercial purposes.

NNPC Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, said he was delighted by the development being spearheaded by the NNPC Medicals, saying the project would impact on the bottom line of the corporation in the long run.

According to NNPC’s statement that made this disclosure on Thursday, Baru affirmed that apart from the financial benefits the project promises, it also underlined the progress being made in the transformation efforts to reposition NNPC as a fully integrated company of the future.

The NNPC Magazine’s report further informed that the icing on the cake is the erstwhile Abuja International Diagnostic Centre which is being reconfigured to assume the status of a national flagship medical mall.

Upon completion, the centre will warehouse top class health care providers in cardiovascular, oncology, renal dialysis, radiology and lab services.

The dream, it was gathered, is essentially to make AIDC a hub for other clinics through telemedicine.

This process allows the remote delivery of healthcare services, such as health assessments or consultations with the support of telecommunications and information technology infrastructure. It will enable the healthcare providers to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients without the need for an in-person visit.

Babatunde Adeniran, Chief Operating Officer, NNPC Ventures, said the new-found medical vision was modeled as well as inspired in part by successes recorded in other jurisdictions like Saudi Arabia, where the state oil company, Saudi Aramco, partners John Hopkins to provide best medical care for its staff and residents of other Middle East countries.

“NNPC has 52 clinics/hospitals, the largest network of healthcare facilities in Nigeria which is enough capacity for us to build on, upgrade the facilities and achieve our commercialization dream. The aim is to reduce to zero, medical tourism and the accompanied capital flight with a view to retaining the money in Nigeria while also improving NNPC’s revenue,’’ he said.

Musa Shaibu, veteran Occupational Health Physician and Managing Director of NNPC Medical Services Limited (NMSL), told the NNPC Magazine that the corporation was harnessing its strong brand name and market place identity to achieve remarkable results in the pursuit of medical excellence.

“The NNPC name is huge, it is a golden name and as we are going into healthcare delivery in the name of NNPC, it is going to be a huge advantage. Don’t forget that, over the years, because we have been in the practice, we have interfaced with the best in healthcare delivery across the world. We know what to do and how to achieve result,’’ he said.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade long experience in the global financial market.

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Investment

Barclays Tell High Net Worth Investors to Shun Africa and Other Emerging Economies

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Barclays to High Net Worth Clients, Stay Off Africa and Other Emerging Economies

Barclays, one of the world’s largest investment banks, has started advising high net worth clients to stay off Africa and other emerging economies.

According to Barclays, despite the recent recovery noticed in emerging-market stocks, investors are better off avoiding the risks that still abound in emerging nations. Barclays Plc, however, advised high net worth clients to focus on U.S equities despite the S&P’s breakneck rally.

The investment bank said emerging economies do not have enough fiscal buffers to spend their way out of the COVID-19 pandemic and will likely continue to struggle in the near-time compared to the US with 12 percent of gross domestic product fiscal-support.

It said the huge US stimulus may halt rebound in emerging-markets stocks as more money is expected to flow into the world’s largest economy and its European counterparts.

“Compared to the U.S., emerging-market economies appear more vulnerable,” said Haider, the London-based managing director and head of global growth markets. “Their central banks have less room to maneuver, their governments may not be able to provide unlimited support and equity markets, given their sector mix, can be more challenged by an economic slowdown.”

Barclays added that even after 33 percent rebound in stocks of emerging markets since the panic selloff subsided in March, stocks are still down by 9 percent from year-to-date while the US S&P 500 stocks are up by 45 percent. Presently, their stocks trading at a 36 percent discount to US stocks, up from 25 percent three months ago.

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Economy

Crude Oil Rises to $43.1 Per Barrel on Production Cuts Extension

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  • Crude Oil Hits $43.1 Per Barrel Following OPEC’s Production Cuts Extension

Brent crude oil, against which Nigerian oil price is measured, rose by 1.25 percent on Monday during the Asian trading session following OPEC and allies’ agreement to extend crude oil cuts to the end of July.

OPEC and allies, known as OPEC plus, agreed to extend production cuts of 9.7 million barrels per day reached in April to July on Saturday.

In the virtual conference, delegates agreed that members, including Nigeria and Iraq presently struggling to attain a 100 percent compliance level must keep to the agreement or be forced to do so in subsequent months.

Nigeria, Iraq and others failed to keep to the cartel’s agreement in May after reports show that Nigeria only managed to attain a 19 percent compliance level during the month while Iraq struggled to attain just 38 percent in the same month.

Russia and Saudi Arabia, the two largest producers of the group, warned members to stick to the agreed quota if they want to rebalance the global oil market.

While the errant producers such as Iraq and Nigeria have vowed to reach 100% conformity and compensate for prior underperformance, we still think they will likely continue to have some commitment issues over the course of the summer,” said Helima Croft, head of global commodity strategy at RBC Capital Markets.

The potential return of Libyan output could also cause considerable challenges for the OPEC leadership.

Earlier on Monday, Brent crude oil hits $43.1 per barrel, more than a month record-high, before pulling back slightly to $42.83 per barrel.

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Gold Dips by 2 Percent on Better Than Expected Job Report

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  • Gold Dips by 2 Percent on Better Than Expected Job Report

Gold prices declined by 2 percent on Friday following a better than expected US non-farm payroll report.

The report showed an increase of 2.5 million payroll numbers against a decline of 7.5 million predicted by many experts.

The surprise number boosted investors’ confidence in US recovery as many dumped their haven investment (gold) for the stock market.

“We had significantly stronger-than-expected U.S. payroll numbers – an increase of 2.5 million versus an expectation of a decline of 7.5 million – that 10-million swing has brought forward expectations of the economic recovery in the United States,” said Bart Melek, head of commodity strategies at TD Securities.

Spot gold immediately declined by 1.9 percent per ounce to $1,678.81 while the U.S. gold futures slid 2.6 percent to settle at $1,683.

Gold was also being pressured by stronger yields and a slightly firmer dollar, “meaning the opportunity cost to hold gold in the portfolio has gone up,” Melek added.

The surprise didn’t stop there, US Dow Jones was up 614 points despite the protest going on the US and US-China tension.

Also, NASDAQ rose by 29 points while the S&P index added 50 points increase.

Note: Investors generally increase their investments in gold and other haven assets during a crisis to avert risk exposure and do the opposite once they sense a better economy.

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