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Here is how CBN Forex policy hurt Bureaux De Change (BDC) operators

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The president, Association of Bureaux De Change Operator of Nigeria (ABCON), Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe said the Bureau De Change (BDC) business has been negatively affected by uncompetitive rate, as the CBN sells dollars to BDCs at higher rate compared to what the regulator sells to commercial banks, yet both institutions target the same market segment and customers.

This confirms the recent report which says that over 700 Bureau De Change (BDC) operators have in recent months been rendered inactive in the Central bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) Forex Window.

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Reasons why over 700 BDCs are inactive

According to Gwadabe, the BDCs buy dollar from the CBN at N360/$1 and sell to end users at N362/$1 while the regulator sells to commercial banks at N358/$1 and the banks sell to end users at N360/$1.

He described the buying rate for the BDCs as uncompetitive and a big disincentive for many forex users to patronize the operators.

He lamented that BDCs are not only buying at exorbitant rate, but also sell at a rate higher than that of the banks hence, creating low patronage for the operators.

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He further stressed that since both banks and BDCs operate and service the same market, both institution should get dollars at the same rate to allow for fair competition.

The ABCON boss solicited for a review in the rate which dollar is sold to the BDCs by the CBN so as to boost ongoing recovery of the naira against dollar.

He said the success recorded by the CBN in stabilizing the naira was largely contributed by the BDCs which remain backbone of the retail forex segment of the economy.

In addition, Gwadabe called on the CBN to increase the volume of Personal Travel Allowances (PTAs) from $4,000 to $8,000; Business Travel Allowances (BTAs) from $5,000 to $10,000; school fees from $5,000 to $20,000 and medicals from $5,000 to $15,000 quarterly to deepen liquidity in the market.

Patricia
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Business

Shoprite Nigeria is worth at least N25 billion

N25.6 billion price tag is only reflective of what Shoprite Nigeria’s operations is worth on paper.

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Shoprite

Africa’s largest retail chain, Shoprite, announced on Monday that it is has decided to divest from its Nigerian retail entity, Retail Supermarkets Nigeria, the owners of Shoprite Supermarket Nigeria.

Going by several media reports and social media accounts, the sale is close to being consummated and a buyer is already in line to purchase the company. Getting information on the purchase consideration for this deal can be difficult especially if there are non-disclosure clauses.

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For example, then Zinnox purchased Konga from Naspers (another South African firm) and AB Kinnevik two years ago, though the purchase consideration was not disclosed.  However, we do not know what Shoprite Nigeria is worth on paper.

What is it worth on paper? Going by the company’s most recent annual report published in June 2019, Shoprite values its equity in its Nigerian subsidiary, Retail Supermarkets Nigeria Ltd at R 1.164 billion (1.1 billion rands). This translates to about N25.6 billion using the official exchange rate. This is also an equivalent of $67.7 million. The exchange rates are modest and will certainly be higher if the transaction was to be at this valuation.

However, the N25.6 billion price tag is only reflective of what Shoprite Nigeria’s operations is worth on paper, what accountant’s callbook value. It could be more or even less depending on how the negotiation goes.

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Shoprite Nigeria business is also its second-largest, based on book value and next only to Angola.

How will it be funded? The potential investors will likely fund this transaction via debt or equity or a combination of both. Deals like this also take time to be completed even if an agreement is announced and will also be approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria and possibly South Africa.

We will keep you updated as we get more information.

Patricia
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Social clubs, recreational centres to reopen August 14

The closure of all spas, bars, lounges, night clubs, cinemas, and game arcades remains in place.

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Social clubs, recreational centres to reopen August 14, Lagos International Trade Fair to get permanent site soon, Sanwo-Olu vows , Lagos State discloses road expansion plans in an effort to combat traffic, Lagos State cracking down on Uber, Bolt, Ocar a week after Okada, Keke Napep ban , LASG increases health workers’ allowances, commissions local production of face masks

The Lagos State Government has announced that social clubs and recreational centres will be allowed to reopen operations starting from Friday 14 August 2020.

Earlier today, the government released a statement via its official Twitter handle, in which Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu was quoted to have said that the reopening would be subject to clearance and possession of the Provisional Safety Compliance Certificate. This clearance certification can be gotten right here.

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The Governor also added that at the moment, the safety clearance certificates are only being issued to social clubs with registered trustees.

READ MORE: Update: Lagos to reopen worship centres on August 7

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READ: EPL clubs to be fined £37 million each over suspension of matches

In the meantime, however, the closure of all spas, bars, lounges, night clubs, cinemas, and game arcades remains in place. Any of the listed businesses that reopen prior to the set date and without meeting the set guidelines will be shut down. A monitoring and enforcement team will be at work to ensure that the “guidelines and directives are complied with to the letter”.

The Backstory

As part of moves towards a complete easing up of the lockdown, the Lagos State recently announced the reopening of schools. The government also announced that the reopening of religious houses and places of worship would take effect from August 7.

However, this is subject to strict adherence to standard precautions that have been put in place. All schools are expected to provide hand-washing facilities and ensure physical distancing within their premises. The Lagos State government will make available face mask 200 schools to which this reopening exemption applies for the duration of the reopening.

Relevant agencies have been directed to carry out spot checks and random inspections of schools and defaulters will be sanctioned appropriately.

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FG announces reopening of 104 unity schools tomorrow

The outcome of the meeting was disclosed in a press statement.

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The Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, has announced that all the 104 Unity Colleges are ready to open for exit classes tomorrow, August 4, 2020.

The Minister revealed the preparedness of the Unity Colleges during a Zoom meeting with the Commissioners of Education of the 36 States of the Federation on Monday morning.

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The outcome of the meeting was disclosed in a press statement by the Federal Ministry of Education. The statement was signed by the ministry’s Director of Press and Public Relations, Ben Bem Goong.

READ MORE: World Bank approves $500 million to help keep 6 million Nigerian girls in school

While announcing the formal opening of exit classes for the unity schools, Nwajiuba expressed his delight at the level of comprehensive preparation that has been put in place by the principals of the Unity Colleges.

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During the meeting, the various state commissioners reported varying degrees of preparation and readiness for reopening between August 4 and August 10, 2020, for virtually all schools within their jurisdictions.

READ MORE: FG earmarks $1.6 billion for sea-port construction 

The press statement from the ministry says, ‘’Ahead of August 4th, 2020, Minister of State for Education, Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba has announced that all the 104 Unity Colleges are ready to open their gates to exit classes tomorrow.’’

‘’From today, the Honourable Minister of State for Education, Permanent Secretary and Directors will embark on an assessment tour of all Unity Colleges to ascertain and confirm the reports they have received from the Principals of Unity Colleges.’’

‘’Similarly, Federal Education Quality Assurance Directors deployed to the States have been directed to monitor compliance in their respective states.’’

READ MORE: Unity Bank’s H1 2019 results indicate 96% growth in profit

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The Commissioners of Education from the states were asked to embark on assessment tours in their areas of coverage to ascertain the level of preparations for reopening. While most of the schools will be reopening tomorrow, others will continue to fine-tune their preparations in the coming days for reopening.

Emeka Nwajiuba asked all schools to communicate their specific reopening dates to their parents and students in order to avoid chaos in the system. The statement also noted that all returning students are to undergo temperature checks among other protocols before being admitted into their schools.

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