Nigerian lender, Stanbic IBTC have joined fellow Chinese nationals in Nigeria to celebrate the Asian country’s new year, while underlying the important role the Chinese community in Nigeria have played in the bank’s business ecosystem.
The Chinese New Year is the Chinese festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar. The festival is usually referred to as the Spring Festival in mainland China.
The festival is also referred to as the year of the pig, and Stanbic IBTC has joined in celebration with the Chinese community in Nigeria, stating that the company is proud to associate themselves with the Asian country.
“The staff and management of Stanbic IBTC wish to congratulate the Chinese community as it celebrates its New Year, the year of the pig. You have become a very important part of Nigeria and the Stanbic IBTC family and we are proud to join you to welcome the new Chinese year,” Chief Executive, Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC, Mr. Yinka Sanni, said.
Ties between China and Stanbic IBTC
According to Sanni, the China Nigeria relationship is more significant for Stanbic IBTC. There exists a strategic institutional relationship involving ICBC, Standard Bank and Stanbic IBTC, which can be leveraged to provide stronger trade and business ties between Nigeria and China. ICBC, the world’s largest bank, holds a 20 percent stake in Standard Bank while Standard Bank has about 65 percent stake in Stanbic IBTC.
“The relationship presents a huge leverage in Africa-China trade ties and has resulted in various initiatives across Africa, ranging from Renminbi trading, to Africa-China business centres, and landmark deals,” Sanni, said.
Bilateral trade relationship
Trade relationship with China has improved over the years, with China being one of Nigeria’s biggest trade partners, with a trade balance in the region of $8 billion in 2018, and there is a commitment to deepen trade relations between the two countries.
Among the trade between Nigeria and China is the currency swap deal between the reserve banks of both countries, which Governor Godwin Emefiele signed on behalf of the CBN, while Governor Yi Gang signed on behalf of the (Peoples Bank of China) PBOC. The size of the swap facility is RMB 15 billion/NGN 720 billion. The agreement is valid for three years and can be extended upon mutual consent.