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Business News

Insufficient electricity, unfavourable economy are among challenges hindering companies –CBN

Stakeholders have highlighted insufficient electricity supply and unfavourable economic realities as some of the most serious challenges hindering their business operations.

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diaspora remittances, Total credit to the economy rose to N19.54trillion – CBN Governor, CRR debits, P-AADS, #EndSARS: CBN says funds in frozen accounts may be linked to terrorist activities, Covid-19: Court closures impacted revenue generation for courts - Emefiele, P&ID dispute: UK Court orders $200 million guarantee to FG, Leaked letter by Poultry Farmers Association triggered CBN emergency approval to import maize, nImplications of CBN's latest devaluation and FX unification, current account deficit, IMF, COVID-19, CBN OMO ban could give stocks a much-needed boost , CBN’s N132.56 billion T-bills auction records oversubscription by 327% , Nigeria pays $1.09 billion to service external debt in 9 months , Implications of the new CBN stance on treasury bill sale to individuals, Digital technology and blockchain altering conventional banking models - Emefiele  , Increasing food prices might erase chances of CBN cutting interest rate   , Customer complaint against excess/unauthorized charges hits 1, 612 - CBN , CBN moves to reduce cassava derivatives import worth $600 million  , Invest in infrastructural development - CBN Governor admonishes investors , Credit to government declines, as Credit to private sector hits N25.8 trillion, CBN sets N10 billion minimum capital for Mortgage firms, CBN sets N10 billion minimum capital for Mortgage firms , Why you should be worried about the latest drop in external reserves, CBN, Alert: CBN issues N847.4 billion treasury bills for Q1 2020 , PMI: Nigeria’s manufacturing sector gains momentum in November, CBN warns high foreign credits could collapse Nigeria’s economy, predicts high poverty, MPC Member, BVN, Fitch, Foreign excchange (Forex), Overnight rates crash after CBN’s N1.4 trillion deduction, Nigeria’s foreign reserves hit $36.57 billion; Emefiele keeps his word on defending the naira, CBN to support maize farmers, projects 12.5 million metric tons in 18 months, BREAKING: CBN Upscales Greenwich Trust Limited, grants it's operational license for merchant banking, AGSMEIS: CBN expand beneficiaries to 14,638., CBN expands access to mortgage financing

Stakeholders, who were surveyed in the latest business expectations data, as published by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), highlighted insufficient electricity supply and unfavourable economic realities as some of the most serious challenges hindering their business operations in the country.

Other challenges, according to the respondents, included high interest rate, unclear economic laws, inadequate access to credit, unfavourable political climate, increasing competition, and lower demand.

Interestingly, despite the above-highlighted challenges, the 1050 businesses that participated in the survey expressed optimism in terms of Nigeria’s business outlook.

According to the report, their overall confidence index stood at 26.6 index points and, which is indicative of optimism in the state of Nigeria’s macroeconomy last month. In the same vein, the respondents also showed high confidence in the economy for March, with 58.1 index points.

The CBN business expectation data, which was for the month of February, went further to highlight responses by businesses regarding other major indicators. For instance, in terms of their expectations on exchange rate, businesses expect the naira to appreciate in the coming months.

[READ MORE: Power sector loses N19.15 billion to gas shortages, transmission infrastructure challenges)

They also expected that not only will borrowing rates increase in February, but that such would be the case throughout the course of 2020.

Furthermore, the respondents noted that they expect Nigeria’s inflation rate to stand at 11.6% and 11.8% in the next six months and in the next twelve months, respectively. Interestingly, the respondents expressed satisfaction with the way the government is managing inflation.

“Respondent firms expressed satisfaction with the management of inflation by the Government, with a positive net satisfaction index of 2.4 in February 2020. The net satisfaction index is the proportion of satisfied less the proportion of dissatisfied respondents.”

Finally, the respondents were optimistic in terms of Nigeria’s economic growth. They gave an economic growth index rate of 43.3 for the month of February, as well as a growth index rate of 49.5 points for the next six months as well as the next twelve months.

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You may read the full report, which was compiled by the CBN’s Statistics Department, by clicking here.

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Emmanuel is a professional writer and business journalist, with interests covering Banking & Finance, Mergers and Acquisitions, Corporate Profiles, Brand Communication, Fintech, and MSMEs.He initially joined Nairametrics as an all-round Business Analyst, but later began focusing on and covering the financial services sector. He has also held various leadership roles, including Senior Editor, QAQC Lead, and Deputy Managing Editor.Emmanuel holds an M.Sc in International Relations from the University of Ibadan, graduating with Distinction. He also graduated with a Second Class Honours (Upper Division) from the Department of Philosophy & Logic, University of Ibadan.If you have a scoop for him, you may contact him via his email- [email protected] You may also contact him through various social media platforms, preferably LinkedIn and Twitter.

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    Business News

    Paypal’s Venmo now permits cryptocurrency trading

    Venmo will support four different cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin.

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    Venmo, a mobile payment service owned by PayPal has announced that it has started allowing users to buy, hold and sell cryptocurrencies on its app. Just like PayPal, Venmo will support four different cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin, and users can carry out transactions with as little as $1 on the app

    Founded in 2009, Venmo has over 70 million users and it is one of the most popular payment channels in the US. The payment platform processed around $159 billion in payments last year.

    Since the app functions like a social network, adding cryptocurrency will offer a more user-friendly feel for people who love buying and selling crypto.

    READ: 28 million merchants to be granted crypto usage on PayPal

    As bigger companies show more interest in cryptocurrency, there will be wider adoption of virtual currencies in future. Venmo is the latest payment app that is offering support for cryptocurrency on its platform.

    Paypal, the parent company of Venmo is one of the most active companies in the crypto space as it allows users to buy, sell and hold cryptocurrencies in their digital wallets. Paypal users can also spend their coins at millions of merchants globally.

    Crypto on Venmo is enabled through PayPal’s partnership with Paxos Trust Company, a regulated provider of cryptocurrency products and services.

    What they are saying

    Darrell Esch, Venmo’s Senior Vice President and general manager said “Our goal is to provide our customers with an easy-to-use platform that simplifies the process of buying and selling cryptocurrencies and demystifies some of the common questions and misconceptions that consumers may have.”

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    Business News

    ABCON asks CBN to check impact of cryptocurrencies on diaspora remittances

    The association also noted that the apex bank needs to address other issues driving the patronage of cryptocurrency exchanges for remittance transfers.

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    ABCON disagrees with those calling for naira devaluation

    The Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to introduce measures that will neutralize the positive effects of cryptocurrencies as a channel for diaspora remittances.

    This is to redirect diaspora remittances away from cryptocurrency exchanges to official channels and also protect such against potential disruptions.

    This call was made by ABCON during its Quarterly Economic Review for the first quarter of 2021 where it commended the CBN for the N5/$ rebate scheme introduced to encourage diaspora Nigerians to use official channels to remit their funds.

    However, the association noted that the apex bank needs to address other issues driving the patronage of cryptocurrency exchanges for remittance transfers.

    READ: Nigeria among worst countries to start a career, and they all don’t accept crypto

    What ABCON is saying in their statement

    The association in its statement said, “It is noteworthy that public acceptability for cryptocurrency exchanges are rising which could be quite accountable for the wide drop in diaspora inflows to Nigeria. Insecurity in the country is giving it greater prominence as investors and citizens are finding Cryptocurrency a safe haven for their wealth in case of any eventuality.

    In most Emerging Markets Bitcoin transfers surged last year, as the pandemic exposed the cheaper and more efficient digital remittance services. Migrants sending money across borders to their families prefer the minimal transaction costs of cryptocurrency exchanges against the exorbitant costs of traditional money transfer companies like Western Union.”

    READ: Atsu Davoh is building ways for Africans to easily acquire and spend cryptocurrency

    According to ABCON, “Cryptocurrency transactions are faster than the conventional transfers, which require passing through banks reliant SWIFT, the sluggish, half-century-old interbank messaging system that handles cross-border payments.

    These exchanges override the political complications of official channels. The global reach of cryptocurrencies avoids the inflation risk inherent to official currencies, especially in politically unstable countries reliant on fickle foreign investors.

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    Thus, while we commend the efforts of CBN in introducing the package of Five Naira for One Dollar transfer, it can be seen from the analysis above that the challenges exceed just non-payment of foreign currency by the IMTCs and the exchange rate. Strategies that satisfy the most sensitive of these advantages of Cryptocurrency exchanges must be introduced to redirect flows to the official channel.”

    ABCON also expressed concerns over the country’s huge unemployment rate, urging the government to apply radical approaches with the use of both conventional and unconventional economic and political tools to redress the trend.

    READ: Afreximbank President reveals ways Nigeria can boost diaspora participation in economy

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    What you should know

    • It can be recalled that the apex bank had about 2 months ago, warned the Deposit Money Banks, Non-Financial Institutions and other Financial Institutions against doing business in crypto and other digital assets.
    • The CBN directed financial institutions to immediately close the accounts of persons or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges, warning of severe regulatory sanctions in the event of any breach of the directive.
    • The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had a few days ago, revealed that it is working with the CBN for a better understanding and regulation of cryptocurrencies in the country.

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