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All the major economic news from Nigeria in 5 minutes-25/7/2017

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Summary of the top business, economic and political news in Nigeria today.

  1. Suspected militants on Monday vandalised the Trans-Niger pipeline in Ogoniland in the Niger Delta region, reducing the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation’s crude oil production by 150,000 barrels per day.Link
  2. The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) Traffic Radio Station will go on air very soon, Corps Marshall Boboye Oyeyemi has said.Link
  3. The naira falls yesterday to N367 against the Dollar on the parallel market from N376 it opened for trading as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Monetary Policy Meeting commences today (Tuesday).Link
  4. In a renewed offensive, the Nigeria Police has announced plan to set up anti-piracy unit in all the 36 states of the federation, including the Federal Capital Territory to combat the piracy of intellectual property in the country.Link
  5. South-west governors on Monday met in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital where they expressed their resolve to forge ahead with the regional integration plan, especially in key sectors such as agriculture, security, economy, among others, in the overall benefit of the Yoruba nation.Link
  6. Ahead of the decisions of the Monetary Policy Committee on Tuesday, the Central Bank of Nigeria on Monday boosted liquidity in various segments of the inter-bank foreign exchange market with a total of $195m. Link
  7. The nation’s power generation has fallen below the 3,000 megawatts mark as the number of idle power plants increased to eight on Sunday from five on Friday. The nation’s power grid lost a total of 743.4MW over the weekend as generation dropped from 3,306.6MW on Friday to 2,632.4MW and 2,563.2MW on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.Link
  8. Acting President Yemi Osinbajo on Monday declared that the days in which no single revenue would be generated from crude oil were fast approaching. Osinbajo, who spoke at the Extra-ordinary Session of the Council of Ministers of the African Petroleum Producers Organisation in Abuja, noted that technology was fast depleting the usefulness of crude oil.Link
  9. Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode yesterday expressed optimism that the state’s reforms targeting 3,000 megawatts (MW) of power in the next few years is achievable.Link
  10. Stakeholders in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry have urged the federal government to subject the dividends earned in the oil and gas sector by international oil companies (IOCs) to withholding tax, stressing that Nigeria is the only oil-producing country where dividends in the oil and gas sector are not subjected to withholding tax.Link
  11. Nigeria’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) University, the first of its kind in Africa, is billed to commence academic activities in September this year once it receives the approval of the Federal Executive Council (FEC).Link
  12. The Federal Government has promised to increase revenue base and create job opportunities by embarking on massive growth and utilisation of oceans resources.Link
  13. The Nigerian Export and Promotion Council (NEPC), has proposed to the federal government the approval of five billion naira to support industries in the country.Link
  14. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said it has regained full access to the pipelines that supply crude oil to its three refineries in Kaduna, Warri, and Port Harcourt, thus making it possible for the refineries to produce up to six million litres of petrol and diesel, respectively.Link
  15. The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Fatai Owoseni has called on all relevant stakeholders that transact business around Apapa area of the state to carry out their respective obligations to ease the traffic situation in the area.Link
  16. The recent fire at the Linc Oil and Gas tank farm in Calabar, which claimed 10 lives, and the deafening silence of the Department of Petroleum Resources over the incident has again exposed its weaknesses in enforcing Health Safety and Environment regulations in the oil industry.Link
  17. The nation’s bourse recorded its highest return in over two years on Monday, as the Nigerian Stock Exchange market capitalisation appreciated by N218bn in one session.Link
  18. Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Godwin Emefiele states how the import restriction policy on some items has helped the local economy. He also says Nigeria is on its way out of recession.Link
  19. At the opening ceremony of the 2017 overseas training course on telecommunication technologies for Nigeria, sponsored by  the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China, organised by the Shenzhen Association for Promoting International Economic and Technological Cooperation and co-organised by Huawei Technologies Company, Nigeria, Ltd, in Abuja, the Consular of China Embassy to Nigeria, Mr Zhao Linxiang, said the bilateral training is a capacity building cooperation that will help Nigeria learn from China’s experiences to develop its telecoms and ICT sector.Link
  20. Major stakeholders in the banking and finance sector, on Monday, faulted the move by the Senate to amend the laws regulating microfinance banks in the country. The stakeholders, who included the Federal Ministry of Finance, Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, National Association of Microfinance Banks and  the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, stated that what the microfinance banks needed was remodeling of their operations in order to enable them function effectively.Link
  21. The Central Bank of Nigeria has said that it has recovered over N51.9bn illegally deducted by commercial banks and returned it to the customers.Link
  22. In furtherance of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) drive for a cashless economy, a group of nine Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) accounted for 71,516 Point of Sale (POS) terminals.Link
  23. The Audit Committee Institute Nigeria has moved to tackle conflict of interest in companies at the level of board, management, staff and other stakeholders within the organisation.Link
  24. The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has given mobile telecommunications operators till Friday July 28, 2017 to desist from unethical practice of allowing call masking and call refilling to go in their network with a warning to cease from such or face severe sanctions.Link
  25. The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC producers, led by Russia, have approved the decision of the federal government to cap Nigeria’s oil production at a sustainable volume of 1.8 million barrels per day (mbpd).Link
  26. The Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr. Babatunde Fowler, has expressed confidence in the viability of the Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS), which grants a nine months amnesty to Nigerians who have not paid their income taxes to come forward to do so without being penalised, saying several corporates and individuals have started to come forward to make enquiries on how they can pay their back taxes and regularise their status.Link
  27. A new group known, the FinTech Association of Nigeria, has made its debut in the country. A statement by the promoters of the Association at the weekend hinted that FTAN has been duly registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission, Abuja.Link
  28. Star Times Group President Pang Xinxing has said the company will provide more jobs for young Africans. He spoke at the 2017 YouthConnekt Africa Summit in Kigali.Link
  29. As part of efforts aimed at salvaging the infrastructure deficit in the downstream sector of the petroleum industry as well as enhanced the nation’s long-term economic growth, Oando, Nigeria’s leading indigenous energy player, conceived the construction of a mid-stream jetty.According to the company, the facility will not only ease the plight of oil marketers’ but will save the country over $120million in demurrage annually.Link
  30. Share price gains recorded yesterday by Dangote Cement and 19 others stocks contributed immensely to the 1.86% increase in the value of Nigerian equities market.Link
  31. The shares of Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp) Plc. led the price gainers yesterday as investors reacted to the improved results announced for the half year ended June 30, 2017.Link
  32. First Bank of Nigeria Limited has implemented new and exciting features on its mobile banking application – First Mobile to enhance security and customers’ digital banking experience.Link
  33. The World Bank has collaborated with the Yobe State Government under the FADAMA III Project to boost agriculture in the North-east state with the construct a mini dam and feeder roads in two local governments.Link
  34. Governor Darius Ishaku of Taraba State has signed the state Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Bill into law.Link
  35. The Africa Development Bank (AFDB) is set to support Katsina State in the development of an industrial park in the state, the Governor, Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina has said.Link
  36. The Charge‘d Affair of Nigeria in Mali, Yara  Abdulsalam,  says an indigenous motor manufacturing company, Innoson Motors, has signed MoU with a Malian firm to export 400 locally made vehicles to Mali.Link
  37. The Federal Government will create an ICT databank that will aid research and innovation in the country, the Minister of Science and Technology Dr Ogbonnaya Onu has said.Link
  38. Acting President Yemi Osinbajo will tomorrow swear in the two ministers-designate, Stephen Ocheni (Kogi) and Suleiman Hassan (Gombe)Link 
  39. The Gombe State Board of Internal Revenue, in collaboration with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), has launched the Voluntary Income and Assets Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) in the state.Link
  40. The National Bureau of Statistics stated that the Retirement Savings Account membership distribution data for the second quarter, 2017 showed that over 7.5 million workers registered under the pension scheme.Link

 

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Economy & Politics

Skills Africa needs for sustainable development

Over a billion people with 5 official working languages – Arabic, English, French, Portuguese and Swahili , will again celebrate Africa Day this year.

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From Addis Ababa to Durban, Lagos to Cairo, from the Sahara Dessert to the Nile River, over a billion people with 5 official working languages – Arabic, English, French, Portuguese and Swahili – will again celebrate Africa Day this year.
A day to remember, reminisce and celebrate successes recorded against the struggles for independence, freedom from apartheid and colonization. Although, with the new normal brought about by Coronavirus, the 2020 celebrations would be quite unlike previous years.

The Africa Union (Formerly OAU) has recorded good milestones in terms of political independence and self-governance. So now is a good time for Africa to reflect on our independence.

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On reading the objectives of the Africa Union (AU), words like independence, territorial integrity, human rights, security, cooperation are splattered across the pages. Significantly, none of the AU objectives seeks economic autonomy for Africa or her member states. This is a fundamental flaw which speaks directly to Africa’s issue of having a large population without the requisite skills for growth.

Our education is largely dependent on the western curriculum and narrative. There is hardly any major infrastructure, industrial or development project in Africa with 100% African content in manpower, materials or capital.

(READ MORE: Nigerian economy going into recession, might contract by -8.9% – Finance Minister)

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It is now well established and more evident that political independence without economic independence is like a car without an engine. Economic empowerment is the nucleus of national development. No fewer than 14 West African countries currently use CFA Franc, with some having used the currency for at least 75 years. This goes beyond nameplate as the Bank of France holds half of those countries’ currency reserves. This is effectively cutting their growth capacity by 50%.

Skill Up Africa for Sustainable Development

8 of those 14 countries will relinquish the CFA franc for the new ECOWAS currency, ECO (to be launched in July 2020). However, there is no indication that the affected African leaders would ask France for compensation for the years of economic sabotage to their countries. The introduction of the ECO was to bring a ray of hope, but we hope the real difference would not just be in the colour of the currency. This is because the ECO will not be autonomous but would be pegged against the Euro.

France is not alone in the economic sabotage of Africa, they are in the good company of the United Kingdom, the US and Belgium, to mention a few. However, are these foreign countries to blame? Africa got her independence, but African leaders refuse to be independent and the dependent mentality is also enshrined in the AU objectives.

One of the AU objectives states “to work with relevant international partners in the eradication of preventable diseases and the promotion of good health on the continent.” The statement looks good superficially, but it is enlaced with aid orientation, the lack of drive for self-reliance, and a beggarly mindset.

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(READ MORE: Sahara Group donates medical equipment to support fight against COVID-19)

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Let us educate Africa to pursue the development of its people, with core skills that are necessary to deliver the quality of the progress and growth that Africans desire. African construction companies should make African infrastructure and 100% African content should be the target in automobile engineering, healthcare, information technology,

Necessity is said to be the mother of invention. The need for Africans to lead Africa out of poverty, tyranny and underdevelopment is a matter of great importance, far beyond just necessity. Every African must desire to get skilled, and not just education, as we currently have it. We must have the competence to develop our agriculture system, mine Africa’s natural resources and add value by processing them locally.

Africa Day would only be truly worthy of celebration when African people and countries are skilled enough to accomplish our dreams of self-reliance and economic independence.

Article written by Olatunde Akintola. Olatunde is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountant of Nigeria and alumni of Manchester Business School. He writes from Lagos.

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Tech News

Tiktok’s In-App revenue surges amid lockdown

ByteDance Ltd’s brainchild, TikTok, together with Douyin ranking tops globally on mobile apps with the highest revenue generated for the month of April.

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TikTok announces $250 million pledge to aid combat coronavirus, Does YouTube stand a chance against TikTok?

The meme-making business has proven to be worth all the fuss, with TikTok, as well as its Chinese twin app, Douyin, ranking tops globally on mobile apps with the highest revenue generated for the month of April.

Sensor Tower, notes that just in the first quarter of this year, ByteDance Ltd’s brainchild, TikTok, together with Douyin which caters to the Chinese market, generated 315 million downloads globally, from the 187 million it had just a year earlier.

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The ranking, which was based on their in-app purchases, reveal a tenfold increase, as the companies garnered a whopping $78 million in revenue. The Chinese market is said to have contributed 86.6% of Douyin’s revenue, followed by the U.S market which contributed 8.2%.

This places them ahead of older names like Netflix & YouTube. As opposed to using subscriptions like these established brands, TikTok and Douyin allow users to purchase virtual currency to spend on their favorite content creators.

(READ MORE: Does YouTube stand a chance against TikTok?)

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While ByteDance is exploring the world of online commerce, it continues to rely on advertising as its primary income source. However, Emarketer projects that more than 75 million US social network users will make at least one purchase from a social channel in the year 2020.

 

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Business News

Sanwo-Olu to virtually inaugurate projects as he presents scorecard of first year in office

Some of the projects to be commissioned will be done virtually, while a few will be done on-site.

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COVID-19: Lagos State to begin curfew on Sunday to disinfect metropolis, Lagos state government discharges 7 more coronavirus patients, Lagos state will reverse to full lockdown, Sanwo-Olu to virtually inaugurate projects as he presents scorecard of first year in office

Lagos state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, will virtually inaugurate housing, education, and road projects on May 29, as part of activities to mark his first year in office.

According to a report by NAN, the projects are part of the government’s efforts to renew infrastructure in critical sectors and to make the commercial centre a smart city.

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Some of the projects to be commissioned will be done virtually, while a few will be done on-site.

The projects

Lagos state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, listed some of the projects in an official statement. He said:

”In the education sector, Sanwo-Olu will conduct virtual inauguration of completed classroom blocks in Maya Secondary School, Ikorodu; Eva Adelaja Junior School, Bariga; and Saviour Primary School, Ifako-Ijaiye, among others. 

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“Virtual inauguration of completed works such as the Concrete Jetty in Baiyeku, Ikorodu, Aradagun-Ajido- Epeme Road in Badagry, and the Maryland Signalisation project also form part of the itinerary to commemorate the anniversary.”

(READ MORE: Lagos increases health workers’ allowances, commissions local production of face masks)

Omotoso also stated that the Governor would inaugurate the 360-unit Lagos Homes in Ikorodu, and then visit Igbogbo Baiyeku IIB Estate, Lekki, and the Courtland Villas on Femi Okunnu Estate during the week.

Plans for celebrating Children’s Day

 In a related development, Governor Sanwo-Olu will deliver an address on Wednesday May 27 to mark the children’s day celebration, and the 53rd anniversary of Lagos state.

Omotoso, however, noted that all celebrations would be kept on the low in reflection of the current challenges and realities of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Presenting one-year scorecards

The activities for the week are expected to begin with press briefings at J.J.T Park in Alausa on May 27, where members of the State Executive Council will present their scorecards in line with the six pillars of the state’s T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda.

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(READ MORE: Lagos Medical workers call off strike, as IG sends strong warning to security agencies)

According to the information commissioner, there will be two sessions of press briefings daily from May 27 to June 3, as the Governor considers it expedient to render a stewardship account of the last one year.

“Three special publications highlighting the achievements of the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration and testimonies of beneficiaries of various initiatives of the government are slated for presentation to the public by the governor and his Deputy, Dr Obafemi Hamzat,” he added.

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