Following Godwin Emefiele’s Senate confirmation as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), financial institutions in the country have expressed their need for tougher regulations.
In separate interviews, the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of these financial institutions expressed their belief that tougher regulations could help banks scale up their services.
Johnson Chukwu, the CEO of Cowry Assets Management Limited, advised Emefiele to ensure that the CBN is more decisive in resolving all banking issues in order to avoid any form of contagion effect.
“In terms of banking supervision and regulation, I want to see a situation whereby the central bank is more decisive in resolving banking crisis, such that when it becomes imperative that a particular weak institution should be allowed to exit the market, I believe the CBN should be decisive. But in all, we expect to see stronger regulation,” Chukwu explained.
“He (Emefiele) has said he is going to focus on stimulating the economy, particularly the small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs). He should work towards harmonising the exchange rate and push for faster economic growth through monetary stimulus. I also expect him to continue to work towards lowering interest rate.”
Also, the Managing Director of Investment Banking at United Capital Plc, Babatunde Obaniyi, called for stronger banks.
“I think he (Emefiele) needs to make our banks stronger. What we need are stronger banks that can drive the developmental process in the country. We expect the CBN to guide the banks to cut down on the bad loans and also make them lend to the real sector. Banks should do less of trading in treasury bills and focus on supporting critical sectors of the economy.”
He went further to state that with Emefiele’s reappointment, there would be stability in terms of policy drive. Also, investors would be able to make a projection on basic parameters such as the exchange rate and the direction of the interest rate.
“But I think the focus for the CBN governor should be how to have inclusive growth for the economy. Having paddled us out of recession and the economy is now growing at a modest rate, I think we can do better. So, the strategic thrust should be how to oil the real sector of the economy.”