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Govt Inaugurates Committee On Review Of Nigeria’s Trade Policy

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Govt To Address Challenges Facing Cotton Industry - Minister

The Federal Government has inaugurated a committee on the review of Nigeria”s Trade Policy
Members of the committee were drawn from the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment (FMITI) Nigeria Office for Trade Negotiation, (NOTN), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS), academia among others.

Inaugurating the committee in Abuja, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo said the ceremony marked a significant new trajectory on how Nigeria uses international trade and investment as veritable tools for economic growth and poverty reduction.

Otunba Adebayo stated that the major objectives of Nigeria’s Trade Policy which were first articulated in a document in 1989 under the Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP), was later revised in 2002; and has not been reviewed or revised since then.

“So, today, we have begun a new phase in the ongoing efforts by the ministry to review and update the National Trade Policy of Nigeria 2002, with a view to ensuring that the new trade policy framework reflects the very dramatic changes that have taken place in the global trade and economic policy landscape, especially the 2008/2009 global financial and economic crises, as well as the current health, economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he explained.

According to him, all the developments have greatly affected the way we produce and trade, including the evolution of global production networks and global value chains and it is, therefore, the firm commitment of the ministry that Nigeria has to strategically respond to these global trends, in order to promote and sustain its trade performance.

READ ALSO: Adebayo Asks UK To Address Challenges Faced By Nigerian Businesses

“It is also the ministry’s expectation that the updated Trade Policy of Nigeria document will effectively capture the nine core policy priorities of the recently launched Medium-Term National Development Plan 2021-2025” Otunba Adebayo stressed.

The minister listed the priorities to include building a thriving and sustainable economy; enlarge agricultural output for food security; attain energy sufficiency in power and petroleum products; and expand transport and other infrastructure development.

He said others are expand business growth, entrepreneurship and industrialisation; improve access to quality education, affordable health care and productivity; enhance social inclusion and reduce poverty; build systems to fight corruption, improve governance and create national cohesion; and improve security for all.

“Under these circumstances, it is important for us to ensure that the new Trade Policy of Nigeria is not only consistent with international best practices to enhance productivity and competitiveness, but also fully takes into account the realities of the national economy in the 21st Century,” he emphasized.

Otunba Adebayo noted that all national trade policy frameworks need to explicitly address all aspects of development, including sustainable development, in a holistic manner by providing opportunities for creating wealth through income generation and distribution, increased employment and competitiveness, as well as economic and social well-being.

“This is more so as trade has been central to ending global poverty; and continues to contribute to the economic growth and development of all economies, big or small,” he pointed out.

The minister further stated that to ensure transparency and predictability, it is important that the Trade Policy of Nigeria adopts a perspective approach, such as a five-year cycle which will be the first in this dispensation

“Similarly, it is essential that the national trade policy framework, going forward, is continuously augmented or complemented by year-to-year import and export policy guidelines, thereby reducing trade costs and enhancing a more transparent trade-enabling environment in Nigeria. For this to be effective and efficient, a robust and intensive mechanism for consultations with stakeholders, particularly the private sector and civil society is required.

I, therefore, hope that the TPNRC would consider and provide for how best this objective should be operationalised,” he stated.

According to him, In spite of the prevailing environment of geo-political tensions, particularly the Brexit Vote, the 2016 US elections and the intensification of trade tensions with China, as well as the ongoing Russia-Ukraine War, the international trading system has continued to experience several initiatives on trade reforms, leading to various new preferential trade agreements, including the African Continental Free Trade Area (FTA) Agreement that entered into force on 30th May, 2019.

READ ALSO: How Govt Can Attract Investments To Nigeria’s Economy – Okonjo-Iweala

“Since there is consensus that the the main political implication of the proliferation of free trade agreements is the positive impact it has on international trade, including the promotion of growth and development in developing countries and LDCs, Nigeria also needs to fashion out how to use its FTA landscape to support pro-growth and pro-poor trade policy reforms. To ensure inclusive economic recovery and growth, special attention should be paid to the needs of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs), youth and women, as well as persons with disabilities,” he emphasized.

“Let me assure you that, in providing these guidelines, it is not my intention to be prescriptive, or to circumscribe your work, as a review committee. Nevertheless, I merely wish to highlight the key pillars around which you may need to build, so as to ensure coherence and consistency with the various activities and issues already articulated under the Ministry’s Trade Policy Action Plan 2022 – 2026, which was recently approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC)” He added.

In a remark, the Chairman of the Committee, Mr Mike Okpanachi who commended the Federal Government for the setting up of the committee said the move would go a long way in enhancing the growth of the nation’s economy.

He therefore promised the committee’s commitment towards producing a trade document that would meet international best practices in the sector.

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Bitcoin Value Drops By 50% Since November Peak

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Bitcoin Value Drops By 50% Since November Peak

The value of Bitcoin has dropped below $31,000 (£25,140) – less than half of what it was at its peak last November, according to the Coinbase cryptocurrency exchange.

The fall of the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market value comes as stock markets around the world have also tumbled in recent days.

On Monday, key European, Asian and US indexes slid lower again.

Investors are fleeing riskier assets for safe havens like the dollar.

On Monday, Japan’s Nikkei index dropped 2.5%, while London’s FTSE 100 closed down more than 2%. In the US, the Dow fell nearly 2%, the S&P 500 dropped 3.2% and Nasdaq lost 4.3%, deepening the falls in recent weeks.

READ ALSO: Why It Is Unsafe To Invest In Bitcoin Now – American Billionaire

Uber was among the companies driving the declines.

Shares in the company dropped more than 11% on Monday after media outlets reported that chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi had warned staff that investors were becoming more cautious about investments. He said Uber would respond by cutting costs and slowing its hiring.

“It’s clear that the market is experiencing a seismic shift and we need to react accordingly,” he wrote in the letter.

“The average employee at Uber is barely over 30, which means you’ve spent your career in a long and unprecedented bull run. This next period will be different, and it will require a different approach.”

In times of market uncertainty traditional investors will often sell what they see as riskier assets – like digital currency – and move their money into safer investments.

Moves in cryptocurrency markets have increasingly followed wider trends, as professional investors, such as hedge funds and money managers, become more active in trading what was once the domain of individual investors and enthusiasts.

Bitcoin, which accounts for about a third of the cryptocurrency market with a total value of close to $570bn, has seen its price plunge more than 10% in the last day and more than 20% in the last week.

READ ALSO: Ukraine Becomes Latest Country To Legalize Bitcoin

Ethereum, the second biggest cryptocurrency in the world, has also fallen in value, down by more than 20% in the last week.

Volatile trading in digital assets has not been unusual in previous years, but much of 2022 had been relatively quiet for the cryptocurrency market.

Last week, central banks around the world, including the US, UK and Australia, raised interest rates as they attempt to tackle rising prices.

The US Federal Reserve raised its key lending rate by half a percentage point, marking its biggest rate hike in more than 20 years.

That has triggered more concerns among some investors that inflation and the higher cost of borrowing could have a major impact on global economic growth.

Investors are also worried about the impact of the war in Ukraine on the world economy.

READ ALSO: CAR Becomes First African Country To Adopt Bitcoin

Meanwhile, in the last year Bitcoin has become legal tender in two countries – El Salvador and the Central African Republic.

Since El Salvador said it would allow consumers to use the cryptocurrency in all transactions, alongside the US dollar, the International Monetary Fund has urged it to reverse its decision.

. BBC

 

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BREAKING: Disputed Oil Wells Belong To Rivers – Supreme Court

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BREAKING: Disputed Oil Wells Owned By Rivers - Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on Friday declared that Rivers State owns the 17 oil wells being disputed with Imo State.

The ruling has ended the political arrangement on the sharing of revenue.

In its verdict delivered on Friday, the Supreme court decided that the oil wells located in Ndoni and Egbema communities belong to Rivers State.

There was previously a political arrangement put in place by the federal government for the revenue from the disputed wells to be shared equally between the two states.

However, when Emeka Ihedioha became governor in 2019, a presidential memo directed that all the revenue should go to Imo.

READ  ALSO: Supreme Court Voids Buhari’s Executive Order 10

The Rivers State government swiftly filed a suit against the presidential directive.
This ruling by the court has now put an end to the equal sharing of the revenue from the oil wells with everything now going to Rivers.

 

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Transcorp Delivers Solid Q1 Performance As Profit Leaps By 147%

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Transcorp Delivers Solid Q1 Performance As Profit Leaps By 147%
Transcorp President/Group Chief Executive Officer, Owen Omogiafo

Transnational Corporation Plc, (Transcorp Group) has reported significant and impressive returns in all its major financial indices for the first quarter ended March 31, 2022.

Its unaudited results filed with the Nigeria Exchange Limited, showed that the conglomerate with interests in the power, hospitality, and energy sectors recorded a profit after tax of N5.0bn rising significantly by 147% up from N2.0bn recorded in March 2021; while profit before tax which stood at N2.5bn in March last year, gained 129% to N5.7bn in the same period under consideration.

A further look at the results showed that revenue increased by 28% from N24.4bn at the end of the first quarter of 2021; to N31.4bn as at March 2022, while operating income followed the same pattern as it grew by 45% to N10.0bn up from N6.9bn reported the previous year.

An increase in expenses such as inventories, prepayments, trade and other receivables, however, did not dampen the group’s total assets which rose to N417bn in the period under review, up from N416bn recorded at the end of the 2021 financial year; just shareholders’ funds also rose by 3% to N151.0bn, up from N146.3bn.

Transcorp’s President/Group Chief Executive Officer, Owen Omogiafo, who was excited at what she described as a great start to a rewarding year, expressed satisfaction with the performance for the first quarter 2022, and noted that the result is in line with the group’s strategy.

READ ALSO: Transcorp Group’s Profit After Tax Hits N27.9b

She stated: “This laudable performance was achieved as a result of the improved activities across all our businesses. We are excited with the results for the first quarter of 2022; delivering 28% rise in revenue and 129% rise in profit before tax; and we are confident in the strategic direction for the group as it underlines the success of our long-term objectives of diversifying revenues and accessing new business opportunities to deliver superior values to all our stakeholders.”

Omogiafo re-emphasised the brand’s commitment towards producing long-term value and sustainable impact, adding that already, this has been evident from the results churned out by the business in the full year 2021, and Q1 2022, despite the unstable operating environment, adding, “We will continue to work diligently as we remain well-positioned to provide significant value for our stakeholders.”

Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc (Transcorp) is a publicly quoted conglomerate, with a diversified shareholder base of over 300,000. Our portfolio comprises strategic investments in the power, hospitality, agribusiness and oil and gas sectors. Our notable businesses include Transcorp Hilton Abuja, Transcorp Hotels Calabar, Transcorp Power, TransAfam Limited and Transcorp Energy.

 

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