Top Business , Economic and political stories as at Today

Here are some of the top business & economy & political stories in Nigeria as at 10th of August 2017.

1. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), yesterday disclosed plans to execute a 10-year investment with its partners to generate additional $30 billion for the government.

2. The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu has stated that the federal government might sell the country’s refineries as scrap metals in few years’ time if the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) did not sit up and make the refineries to be functional.

3. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has indicated that it will clear its cash call debts to its Joint Venture (JV) partners in oil production before the anniversary of the first $400 million payment it made to them in April this year.

4. The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu has said that Nigeria’s oil and gas industry would require $10 billion (N3.05 trillion) over the next three years to increase crude oil production from 2.2 million barrels per day (bpd) to 3 million bpd.

5. The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in a recent data released on pension scheme, has recorded over 7.5 million registered workers in the Retirement Savings Account (RSA) membership distribution for the second quarter of 2017.

6. The management of Nigerian Deposit Insurance Company (NDIC) said a total sum ofN8.68 billion were either stolen, reported as cases of frauds or forgeries and outright theft involving bank staff in 2016.

7. To clear waste at the ports, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) refuse collector has acquired a $4.5 million equipment. African Circle Pollution Management Limited (ACPML) will use the equipment to fight pollution in the oceans, lagoons, ports and waterways.

8. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has assured that Financial Technology (FinTech) companies will not take over the roles played by commercial banks in delivering services to customers. He added, “The fear has always been there that FinTechs will take over the roles of the banks and that a time will come when there will be no bank. Fintechs are not licenced as financial institutions, they cannot take deposits, they can make payments out of bank accounts. They can only facilitate payments or make it easier but the banks will still continue to play a very big role.”

9. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday, announced more injection of forex into the Nigerian foreign exchange market. The apex bank boosted the FOREX market with the sum of $195m in three segments of the market. In the wholesale segment of the inter-bank Foreign Exchange market, it auctioned $100m and also intervened in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and invisible segments, with the sum of $50 million and $45million respectively.

10. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has disclosed that Naira currency in circulation dropped by 5.6 per cent to N1.77 trillion in July 2017. The naira in circulation continued to drop in 2017 following the apex Bank intensive effort to mop liquidity in the economy to reduce inflation and sustain its stability.

11. Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has said that the N7 trillion federal budget for 2017 is not sufficient to facilitate the desired economic development in the country, hence the government was making the investment climate profitable and easy for private sector involvement.

12. The Director-General of the Budget Office of the Federation, Mr. Ben Akabueze, said the Federal Government had adopted an automated platform in order to enhance early preparation of the budget. The automated platform is called the Government Integrated Financial Management Information System. Mr. Ben Akabueze, has also said that over 4,250 participants involved in budget preparation from over 800 Federal Government MDAs will be trained on the use of GIFMIS.

13. The President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki , has said that the senate is working to create new forms of capital through the passage of bills like the Secured Transactions in Movable Assets Bill that will allow young people to use their portable assets like cars and laptops as collateral for loans to start small businesses.

14. The Federal Government on Monday announced that commercial activities will begin on the Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri rail line in June next year.

15. There seems to be a disagreement between the Federal Government and the Lagos state government as the Federal Government on Monday asked dredgers to disregard a stop work order issued to them by the Lagos State Government.

16. The Maritime Security Agency, MASECA, has called on the Federal Government to authorize it to partner with other security agencies to beef up security around the country’s waterways in order to tackle vandalism of petroleum assets, militancy and other crimes.

17. The Federal Government has concluded plans to boost power supply to Ariaria International Market in Aba, Abia State. This, it said, was geared towards boosting and ensuring the survival of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the country.

18. A Federal High Court in Lagos yesterday ordered a permanent forfeiture of the $37.5m mansion in Banana Island, Lagos linked to a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, to the Federal Government.

19. The governments of India and Nigeria are set to forge closer cooperation in a determined effort to accelerate growth in Information and Communications Technology with a view to boost both countries’ economies through greater penetration and use of advanced technologies and services.

20. Nigeria’s robust telecommunications regulatory environment, guarantee of Returns On Investment (ROI) and investors renewed confidence in the fast growing sector will form part of the country’s narrative at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Telecom World 2017.

21. About 10,000 youths from oil-bearing communities in Niger Delta will be engaged by the Federal Government as surveillance and security officers at oil pipelines in the region.

22. The Federal Government plans to build Nigeria Heritage Cities in Jeddah, Houston and other cities across the globe that have huge Nigerian populations to serve as one-stop hub for Nigerian foods and products.

23. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said it had so far, through painstaking investigations by its operatives, traced N47.2bn and $487.5m in cash and properties to a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke.

24. The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) market capitalisation yesterday crossed the N13 trillion mark for the first time since October 2014. The market capitalization added N164 billion to close at N13, 097 trillion.

25. Pension Fund Administrators have gradually increased the amount of funds invested in infrastructure under the Contributory Pension Scheme to N4.2bn. Figures obtained from the National Pension Commission on Tuesday showed that this translated to 0.07 per cent of the total funds under the scheme, which rose to N6.49tn as of April this year.

26. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria(ICAN) has appointed Mr. John Evbodaghe as its registrar/chief executive officer. The institute also appointed Dr. Ben Ukaegbu and Mukaila Lawal as deputy registrars. The appointment took effect from August 1, 2017, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

27. PREMIER of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China, Li Keqiang, has said that China will import $8 trillion worth of goods from Nigeria and other parts of the world in the next five years.

28. NIGERIA’s average oil production including condensates, increased to 2.06 million barrels per day (mb/d) last month, from 2.05 million b/d in June, as the country continued to ramp up production amidst retention of output concession from the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), the Ministry of Petroleum Resources has revealed.

29. Amidst rising sales profile of brewing companies, consumers are complaining of high presence of sugar in the low sugar and regular malt drinks. The key competitors in that segment of non-alcoholic beverages may have adjusted their competition strategy as a result of the complaints as now consistently playing up health as one of their unique selling propositions to retain or increase their market share.

30. The Onitsha Traders Consultative Forum (OTCF), has called on the major political parties to ensure that they pick their candidates from Anambra North Senatorial District for the sake of equity and fairness.

31. The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority and other relevant stakeholders in the aviation sector have called for collaboration towards ensuring safer skies in Nigeria and the African region.

32. The Association of Stockbroking Houses of Nigeria has commenced strategic training of capital market professionals as preparatory to the inauguration of its commodity and futures exchange.

33. Nigerian doctors have cited salary deductions and low work satisfaction as some of the reasons for seeking better jobs overseas. House officers, corps members, medical and senior medical officer, residents, registrars, consultants and medical directors, among others said poor salaries and emoluments as well as the huge knowledge gap were other reasons for their decisions. In a study by the Nigerian Polling Organisation, in partnership with the Nigeria Health Watch, 88 per cent of the medical practitioners indicated interest in jobs outside the country and had registered to write foreign medical examinations.

34. The Federal Executive Council has approved the establishment of the proposed Information and Communications Technology University of Nigeria.

35. The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Tuesday said the lifting of administrative suspension on Pioneer Status Incentives by the Federal Government would boost local production capacity of manufacturers.

36. Nigeria will no longer be a dumping ground for all manner of foreign products, Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has said. He said the present administration was determined to change the trend by empowering local capacities through policies and programmes that could promote economic diversification.

37. The Federal Government will next week complete payment for the construction of the new Lagos-Ibadan rail line being handled by the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, the Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, has said.

38. Producers of vegetable oil are now positioning their products based on consumers’ health consciousness, while paying attention to product repackaging and visibility. Brands produced along the lines of these elements of marketing are not relenting on their various positions, making price differentials insignificant in the race for top contenders in the control of market share.

39. The Federal Government has declared the maiden Smart City Summit Nigeria open with a charge to stakeholders to proffer solutions aimed at enhancing its implementation. Smart City has been described as a city outfitted with high-tech communications capabilities, uses digital technology to enhance performance and well-being, to reduce costs and resources consumption, and to engage more effectively and actively with its citizens.

40. The Auditor General of the Federation, Mr Anthony Mkpe Ayine, has directed staff of his office to henceforth request clearance by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) on any IT project when auditing the accounts of MDAs.

41. The Federal Government has been advised to privatise the 27 local and international airports in the country, as Nigeria does not need a national career. The MD/CEO of the Med-View Airline, Alhaji Muneer said there were only four standard airports; Abuja, Kano, Port Harcourt and Kaduna airports, out of the 27 airports in the country, added that the nation’s airports should be developed to attract investment.

42. An aviation expert, Group Capt. John Ojikutu, said going by the figure of $8 billion declared by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) as the contribution of aviation to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), there are fears the government is being shortchanged.

43. The federal government through the ministry of agricultural and rural development has expressed the desire to ensure Nigeria establishes 15 specialised universities of Agriculture in the next few years.

44. The Federal Executive Council has approved a local content policy for the ongoing Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail project. Under the local content policy, he said the contractor has been directed to ensure that nothing less than 60 percent is reserved for local sourcing of manpower. The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi disclosed this while monitoring the progress of work on the $1.5bn project.

45. Three men, accused of cyber crime and theft of N9.2million, property of Lagos State House Speaker, have been sent to Ikoyi Prison by a Federal High Court in Lagos, after they were docked today.

46. Ongoing drive by the current administration to revamp the rail sector in Nigeria, will cut across the 36 states of the federation, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi said in Lagos, yesterday.

47. Despite generating revenue from crude oil export from 2005 to 2015, Nigeria recorded less than 0.5 per cent savings in its Excess Crude Account (ECA), according to the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI).

48. The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has said the estimated value of manufacturing in the country during the second half of last year reached N5.02 trillion as against N4.08 trillion of the corresponding period of the previous year. This translates to N0.94 trillion or 23.0 per cent increase over the period, according to MAN’s second half of 2016 report.

49. After raising $1.5 billion from the Eurobond market this year, the Federal Government is expected to access more dollars from the Global Capital Market (GCM) before December. Report from FBN Capital, the investment arm of FBN Holdings, says the Federal Government may return to the Eurobond market, adding that the heavily-oversubscribed Iraqi sovereign issue last week without United States guarantees was a reminder of the strength of the market.

50. The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) and National Orientation Agency (NOA) have agreed to work together in the areas of oil revenue savings and promotion of better attitude to public office.

51. Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, yesterday disclosed that the recently-commissioned Abuja-Kaduna rail line now generates over one million naira daily. The Minister who said this during a tour of the projects with newsmen, explained that in the past the rail line was generating N16 million, while it was gulping N56 million per month. But as at now, it is attracting N30 million a month.

52. A major agenda of the Tin Can Island Port, Lagos, is to generate more revenue for the country. Customs Area Controller, Bashar Yusuf, during the command’s recent training series for officers, disclosed that the NCS would deploy latest ICT tools to buoy up the service, in line with 21st century customs operations. He emphasised that the upgrading of ICT facilities would propel more revenue for government’s purse.

53. Hajiya Aisatu Oshiomhole, the mother of former Edo Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, on Tuesday advised politicians to restructure the political scene and reduce the high cost of contesting election.

54. Governors of 18 Northern states in the country yesterday donated the sum of N360 million to support Borno State in addressing problems associated with humanitarian needs and rebuilding of communities and livelihoods destroyed by the Boko Haram insurgents.

55. The Secretary to Kwara State Government (SSG), Alhaji Isiaka Gold, on Wednesday said Senate President, Bukola Saraki has returned all monies paid to him as pension back to the coffers of the state government.

56. The Kebbi Government, on Wednesday said it would review its tax policy to raise its internal revenue collection from the “meager” N6.4 billion it generated in the last two years. The Commissioner for Finance, Alhaji Ibrahim Augie, made the disclosure at a news briefing in Birnin Kebbi.

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