Nigeria is missing on a list of 40 countries that improved regulatory environment for women’s economic participation over the past two years. This was disclosed in the World Bank’s study.
The study, “Women Business and the Law (WBL) 2020”, which measures 190 economies, tracking how laws affect women at different stages in their working lives. It also focused on those laws applicable in main business cities, judges the 40 countries on the enactment of 62 reforms that will help women.
Women are half of the world’s population: With women in many countries having only a fraction of legal rights men have, there is a need for reforms to aid the realization of their potential and help them contribute to economic growth and development, a new World Bank study has said.
David Malpass, President of the World Bank Group disclosed that legal rights for women are both the right thing to do and good from an economic perspective. He added that when women can move more freely, work outside the home and manage assets, they are more likely to join the workforce and help strengthen their country’s economies.
“We stand ready to help until every woman can move through her life without facing legal barriers to her success,” Malpass said.
In Nigeria, while the financial inclusion level is on the upswing, it is mostly men that are captured into the system, while women, across regions of the country, are affected by religious, cultural and educational factors, limiting their potential.
However, Nigeria may have attained some of the reforms, with the majority being mere norms and practices, a lack of full legislative backing and implementation is still a challenge to the achievement of the targets, while women’s economic participation continue to under-perform.
In Sub-Saharan Africa, 11 economies implemented 16 reforms in seven areas. The Democratic Republic of Congo introduced social insurance maternity benefits and equalized retirement ages, while in Côte d’Ivoire, spouses now have equal rights to own and manage property.
The World Bank study covered reforms in eight areas that are associated with women’s economic empowerment, conducted from June 2017 to September 2019, precisely on mobility, workplace, pay, marriage, parenthood, entrepreneurship, assets and pension.
NNPC spends N535.9 billion on subsidy, FAAC in Q1 2020
Petrol subsidy gulped N101.65bn in the first three months of the year.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) spent over N535.9 billion on subsidy and Federation Account Allocation Committee in the first quarter of 2020.
This was disclosed by the corporation in its Monthly Financial and Operations March 2020 report.
The report revealed that while the petrol subsidy gulped N101.65bn in the first three months of the year, the sum of N434.25 billion was paid to FAAC within the same period.
The national oil firm described the subsidy spending as under-recovery. This means that Nigeria is incurring an additional cost in subsidizing the price of petrol to make sure it falls within the regulated price of N143.80 per litre, even though the real market price is above this regulated rate.
It had consistently argued that only the National Assembly was empowered to approve petrol subsidy, despite the fact that NNPC’s monthly under-recoveries were due to subsidy on petrol.
According to the report, while the corporation spent N43.31bn as subsidy on petrol in January 2020, in February, it incurred N20.68bn as under-recovery, and N37.66 billion in March as subsidy.
However, subsidy was halted in March 2020 by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency after the crash in global crude oil prices.
The development, according to the PPPRA, led to the end of petrol subsidy, as the agency stated that petrol price would be adjusted in accordance to global oil prices.
The PPPRA has adjusted petrol price about three times since after the first adjustment in March this year.
The NNPC report further stated that the corporation paid N434.25bn to the Federation Account Allocation Committee during the quarter under review.
It stated that in January, a total of N138.57bn was remitted to FAAC, while the committee received N148.53bn from the corporation in February 2020.
The NNPC said it paid N147.15bn to FAAC in March this year.
CBN adds Maize importation to “41 banned list”
Dealers are to return their forms on or before Wednesday, July 15, 2020.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed all authorised dealers to immediately discontinue the processing of Forms M for maize/corn importation into the country. This directive is contained in a notice that was addressed to authorised dealers and signed by Dr O.S Nnaji, CBN’s Director in charge of Trade and Exchange Department.
In the notice which was made available to the public earlier today, the CBN noted four main reasons for the directive to discontinue maize importation, The reasons are:
- To increase local production
- To stimulate a rapid economic recovery
- To safeguard rural livelihoods
- To increase jobs
In line with this development, all the authorised dealers have been told to return all the Forms M they have already registered for the purpose of importing maize. They are to return the forms on or before Wednesday, July 15, 2020. The notice by the CBN said:
“As part of efforts by the Central Bank of Nigeria to increase local production, stimulate a rapid economic recovery, safeguard rural livelihoods, and increase jobs which were lost as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Authorised Dealers are hereby directed to discontinue the processing of Forms M for the importation of Maize/Corn with immediate effect.
“Accordingly, all Authorised Dealers are hereby requested to submit the list of Forms M already registered for the importation of Maize/Corn using the attached format on or before the close of business on Wednesday July 15, 2020. Please ensure strict compliance.”
What this means: Recall that in June 2015, the CBN issued a circular containing a list of 41 imported goods and services that were banned from accessing Nigeria’s official Foreign Exchange Market. A Nairametrics report at the time had noted that the ban was another hard-line position taken by the apex bank to keep control of the demand of the dollar to as low as it possibly can.
Over the years, the CBN has been modifying this list by including more items. The addition of maize/corn, which is a widely-consumed staple food in the country, is the latest modification.
It should be noted that cereals (which include maize and other assorted grains) make up Nigeria’s top ten imports. In 2019 alone, the country spent about $1.3 billion on cereals importation, according to World’s Top Export.
You may see a copy of the CBN notice along with ‘the attached format’ by clicking here.
4.48 million beneficiaries apply for N-Power jobs in 16 days
The Minister for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development announced on Twitter.
The Federal Government have announced that it has received 4.48 million applications from beneficiaries for the Batch C of its N-Power programme within 16 days.
The N-Power 2020 recruitment portal which opened on Friday, June 26, 2020, at 11.45 pm is the third batch of the programme
This was disclosed in a tweet post by the Minister for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouq, on her official Twitter handle on Sunday, July 12, 2020.
The Minister in the tweet post said, ‘’My team and I continue to interface with stakeholders to ensure a successful transition for the N-Power programme. It has been 16 days since the portal opened and we have received 4.48 million applications to date.’’
According to the ministry, the batch C of the N-Power National Social Investment Programme (NSIP), will only absorb 400,000 applicants at the end of the recruitment exercise.
Nairametrics had over 2 weeks ago, reported the opening of fresh online application portal for the batch C of the N-Power Programme. It was reported that those that applied before the due date and time set for opening of the portal, will have it declared null and void. They also said that all the processes involved in the application are free and as such, applicants do not have to pay anybody.
It was also reported that upon the opening of the portal, the ministry received over 1 million applications across the country within a period of 48 hours. While playing down the initial fear of the portal being compromised, the ministry also assured that it was secured, with all data safe.
My team and I continue to interface with stakeholders to ensure a successful transition for the @npower_ng. It has been 16 days since the portal opened and we have received 4.48 million applications to date.
— Sadiya Umar Farouq (@Sadiya_farouq) July 12, 2020