The regulatory action taken by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to facilitate the listing of MTN Nigeria on the country’s stock exchange market is paying off.
As it has continued to bring economic gains to Nigeria and Nigerians in terms of boosting market capitalization and yielding dividends to shareholders.
The MTN investors have raked in approximately N1 trillion in price appreciation and dividends since April 2020. The listing of MTN was as a result of NCC’s effective regulatory action taken during the mobile network operator’s fine settlement agreement in 2016, which compelled the telco to, among other things, list on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
NCC as the country’s independent telecoms regulatory authority concertedly worked with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to facilitate the landmark listing of the country’s largest telecommunications operator on the bourse.
According to the NCC boss, Prof. Danbatta, the listing was one of the outcomes of the NCC’s stringent regulatory posture, which served as tonic for other telcos, such as Airtel to follow the same direction.
According to Prof. Danbatta, “This is in line with its mandate to promote investment, create a level-playing field for all licensees, ensure compliance to existing telecoms laws and facilitate the delivery of top-notch quality of service (QoS) to consumers. That important regulatory action enabled Nigerians, consistent with the Nigerian Communications Act (NCA) 2003, to partly, own, manage and control MTN. This bold and courageous regulatory action is now transforming lives and boosting the economy.”
The EVC stated, “With MTN shares available in the capital market, it is expected that Nigerians will buy shares and by purchasing the shares of MTN, they will be financially empowered and be socially transformed. Also, one of the benefits of listing on the NSE is that telcos have enormous opportunity for raising more capital for network expansion, which will, in turn, bring about improvement in the quality of service delivery and quality of experience for telecom consumers,”
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He further stated that through this proactive regulation and timely intervention by the NCC, which led to the listing of MTN on the NSE, a new vista of opportunity has been created in the history of telecommunications industry in Nigeria and also that the listing has helped to translate into action, an important objective of the Commission, which is to promote local investment and ownership in the telecom sector.
The NCC boss assured all the stakeholders that the Commission remains committed, through its regulatory policies and actions, to creating the right environment to attract both Foreign Direct Investment (FDIs) and local investment into the telecom industry, for increased economic prosperity for Nigerians.