- S’Africa Becomes 47th Shareholder of Afreximbank
South Africa has taken up shareholding in the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), the African continental multilateral trade finance institution in a bid demonstrate its commitment to promoting intra-African trade and economic integration.
With the shareholding, South Africa becomes the 47th African country to join Afreximbank as a participating state and/or shareholder.
It is being represented by the Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa (ECIC) as its designated investor in line with the terms of the provisions of the Charter of the Bank.
“It is a significant vote of confidence to have South Africa join Afreximbank as a shareholder,” said Dr. Benedict Oramah, President of the Bank, in welcoming the news that the country had joined the Bank as a shareholder.
“South Africa accounts for about 30 to 35 per cent of total intra-African trade, making its membership critical for the attainment of the Bank’s strategic goal of moving intra-African trade share of Africa’s total trade from about 15 per cent currently to 22 per cent by 2021 and raising its annual value to more than $250 billion by that year. We are confident that its membership of Afreximbank will enable it to play a significant role in driving trade across the continent.”
“We are humbled while also motivated by the trust and confidence that the South African government has placed on ECIC to assume the role of designated institution for membership of the Bank,” said Kutoane Kutoane, CEO of ECIC. “We are certain that South African exporters, especially our small and medium-sized exporters, will now have access to the expanded pool of structured trade finance facilities offered by the Bank.”
Kutoane said that ECIC intended to make the partnership mutually beneficial, adding, “this marks a watershed moment defining the era of more inclusive intra-continental trade facilitation on a grand scale”.
South Africa was unable to join Afreximbank at the Bank’s creation in 1993 as the country was still under apartheid rule at the time.
Countries currently on the list of Afreximbank participating and shareholding states include Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Chad, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, and Lesotho. Others are Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Sao Tome and Principe, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Afreximbank shareholders are a mix of public and private entities divided into four classes and consist of African governments, central banks, regional and sub-regional institutions, private investors and financial institutions, as well as non-African financial institutions, export credit agencies and private investors.
Class “A” shareholders are African states, African central banks and African public institutions, including the African Development Bank, while Class “B” is made up of African financial institutions and African private investors.
Class “C” shares are held by non-African investors, mostly international banks and export credit agencies, including Standard Chartered Bank, HSBC, Citibank, China Exim Bank and Exim India. Class “D” shares, a tier approved in December 2012, are fully paid value shares that can be held by any investor. SBM Securities, Mauritius, is currently the only investor in this class on behalf of holders of its depository receipts which are listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius.
Central Bank Restricts Maize/Corn Importation
CBN Adds Maize/Corn to Foreign Exchange Restriction List
In a bid to stimulate local production and support new job creation, the Central Bank of Nigeria on Monday said it has added maize/corn to the foreign exchange restriction list.
In a statement signed by DR. O.S. Nnaji, director trade and exchange department, and released on the apex bank’s website, the central bank said authorised dealers are directed to discontinue the processing of Forms M for the importation of Maize/Corn with immediate effect.
This means while importers of maize/corn are not restricted from importing the commodity, importers can no longer access forex through the central bank rather they will now have to source for their own foreign exchange from the black market or bureau de change operators.
Accordingly, the central bank said authorised forex dealers are required to submit all registered Forms M for the importation of Maize/Corn before the closing of business on Wednesday for processing.
“All Authorised Dealers are hereby requested to submit the list of Forms M already registered for the importation of Maize/Corn using the attached format on or before the close of business on Wednesday, July 15, 2020.”
The CBN continues to add to its growing forex restriction list to further ease pressure on the dwindling foreign reserves, stimulate local production and boost new job creation.
This is coming a few days after Nigerian Naira plunged to over three years’ low of N465 against the United States dollar on the black market and central bank’s official rate was adjusted to N380 following the inability of the apex bank to sustain N360 per US dollar rate.
CBN, Banks to Spend N25 Billion Renovating National Theatre
Bankers’ Committee, CBN to Spend About N25bn on National Theatre
The Central Bank of Nigeria and the Bankers’ Committee on Sunday said they plan to spend as much as N25 billion on Nigeria Creative Centre at the National Theatre, Lagos and three other states in Nigeria.
Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, who spoke during the official handing over of the National Theatre to the Bankers’ Committee for renovation and upgrade on Sunday, thanked President Buhari for the approval and eventual handing over of properties Bankers’ Committee.
He said: “Given our dependence on crude oil as a major source of government revenue, as well as for our foreign exchange earnings, these challenges have served to reinforce the need for stakeholders to promote policies and programmes that will enable greater diversification of the Nigerian economy.
“A diversified economy that supports increased productivity in agriculture and manufacturing sectors, while harnessing the talents of our youths in the creative industries will lead to the build-up of a more resilient economy, which is better able to withstand external shocks, while creating wealth and jobs for our growing population,” he said.
The CBN Governor, who also doubled as the Chairman of the Bankers’ Committee, said in about 18 months, the Bankers’ Committee would have transformed the facility into Nigeria’s creative industrial centre.
“The creative centre, which comprises music, movies, fashion and ICT, can be a key source of growth for our economy creating up to one million jobs for the country’s teeming youths,” he said, adding that it would also aid the objective of reducing the country’s dependence on revenue from crude oil.
Emefiele explained: “India for example in 2018 generated over $240 billion from exports of IT, movies, music and fashion related goods and services. This amount is over five times our annual earnings from the sale of crude oil. With our human capital resources and an enabling environment that will help harness the creative talents of our youths, Nigeria has the potential to earn over $20 billion annually from the creative industry.
“With the growing demand for Nigerian music, movies and fashion, across Africa and in various parts of the globe, our creative industries are spurring innovation, creating jobs, and helping to shape perceptions of Nigeria, as a nation with a strong spirit of creativity and ingenuity.
“We must do more to encourage the innovative works of these young talented Nigerians as they can make significant contributions to the growth and development of our country.
“Second, given our growing population of close to 200 million people, out of which 60 per cent are under the age of 35, it is imperative that we strive to create opportunities that will keep our youths engaged, as it would portend great dangers for the progress of our nation if we allow these talents go to waste.”
Remove Face Mask When Using ATM, Banks Tell Customers
Face Mask May Cause ATM Transaction Failure, Banks Tell Customers
Deposit Money Banks have said due to their face recognition technology, customers wearing face masks may experience service failure while using the Automated Teller Machines (ATMs).
In an email issued to customers by Fidelity Bank, the bank said why the use of face masks is important to curb the spread of COVID-19 pandemic, customers should remove when performing ATM transactions.
The bank said “Wearing of face masks is a safety and precautionary measure we must all adhere to in this period of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“However, we advise that you remove your face mask while making withdrawals or carrying out ATM transactions to allow our ATM properly recognise you.
“Fidelity Bank ATM machines have face detection features installed to curb incidences of fraudulent ATM withdrawals.
“Consequently, you may not be able to carry out any transaction if our ATMs are not able to properly recognise you. We apologise for the inconvenience that this may cause you.”
Meanwhile, Guaranty Trust Bank plc continues to ease accessibility for all customers and advised customers to protect themselves.
GTBank said, “When visiting any of our branches, kindly protect yourself by wearing a face mask at all times. It is also very important that you keep a safe distance when in a queue inside or outside the branch.
“Before visiting any of our branches, please remember that you can withdraw up to N150,000 at all our ATMs and that you can do most of your banking from the safety of your home.”
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