Binnabook: Business News

Readers Stats

Search on Binnabook

Translate

Showing posts with label Business News. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Business News. Show all posts

Amazon Coming to Africa with First South Africa Headquarters

 Amazon has concluded plans to open its African headquarters in South Africa with a real estate investment of over R4 billion.

Authorities in Cape Town said Amazon would be occupying a new development in River Club, a prime section of the city, local media reported on Wednesday.


The 15-hectare parcel of land will cost R4 billion and include two precincts. Authorities said the first precinct of 60,000sqm will occupy different layers of development; while the second section of 70,000 will hold Amazon headquarters in Africa.


“The development is envisaged to take place in phases, with construction set to take place over three to five years,” Cape Town city officials said in a statement.


Over 5,000 direct construction jobs and 19,000 indirect jobs are expected to be created as a result of the move, Business Tech reported.

Ghana local firms that helped to issue $3bn Eurobond

 Five indigenous financial institutions have emerged as critical parts of the processes that led to the raising of US$3.025billion in Eurobonds for Ghana in March 2021.

The institutions - Fidelity Bank Ghana Limited, CalBank PLC, Databank Brokerage Limited, IC Securities (Ghana) Limited and Temple Investments Limited - acted as co-managers of the transaction that turned out to be the country's largest bond sale in history and featured a novel zero-coupon Eurobond, the first of its kind by an emerging market economy.


Known as co-managers in the finance parlance, the five indigenous firms played supporting roles to the joint lead managers in the issuance that was oversubscribed in spite of the grim that the COVID-19 pandemic posed to investor appetite.


The firms worked with their foreign counterparts to develop investor presentation, fashion out the liability management strategy and coordinate the logistics for the first ever virtual roadshow outside Accra.


They also helped to aggregate what turned out to be significant domestic demand for all tranches of the Eurobond, with the largest being the debut zero-coupon bond.


Experts say the demand to the local co-managers came mainly from domestic indigenous investors and that provided access for Ghanaian investors on the international capital markets.


Historically, local co-managers have contributed relatively lower amounts to the total order books.


However, in recent years, there have been improvement in the local co-managers contribution to the total order book, with each successive issuance enjoying increments.


Analysts say the successful collaboration between the local co-managers and the joint lead managers in the 2021 bond sale resulted in the oversubscription by investors and the government securing favourable interest rates for the four-tranche Eurobonds in spite of the impact of COVID-19 and the energy and the financial sectors debts on the 2020 fiscal deficit.



Novelty


The $3.025 billion Eurobond was novel as it was the largest Eurobond issuance by the country and also marked the first time a zero-coupon bond denominated in US dollar had been issued by an emerging market economy for new money or outside of a restructuring.


Of significant importance is the fact that it also marked the first time that four tranches had been issued by a SSA country.



Impressive showing


The Minister of Finance, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, told the Daily Graphic on April 14 that he was delighted about the role of the indigenous firms in the issuance processes, explaining that their active involvement was testament that efforts by the government to develop indigenous capacity in the banking and financial sector were yielding the expected results.


Beyond helping investors domiciled in the country to access the international capital market, Mr Ofori-Atta said the arrangement ensured that almost 50 per cent of the novel zero-coupon bond was taken up by these resident investors, a development that he said was positive for the economy.


“For the first time in Africa, we have seen local managers drive significant local market participation in fund raising in a global Eurobond. Close to 50 per cent of the zero-coupon bond was taken up by the local market through the efforts of the local co-nanagers, " he said.


The Minister of Finance said the gains from the local co-managers showed the deepening of the financial sector and further expressed the commitment of the government to work with the private sector to unlock more opportunities for Ghanaian enterprises.


Mr Ofori-Atta disclosed that Ghana was currently the only country in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) to have "logistics for global issuances managed by local entities.”


He noted that while the local co-managers supported the joint lead managers in the various streams of work, including the investor presentation, development of the liability management strategy and the logistics for the virtual roadshow, "there is the desire for local institutions to take on other lead roles in a bid to localise a significant portion of the work for global and local fund raising efforts."


Usage of proceeds


Of the amount issued, about $1.5 billion of the 2021 Eurobond, which was approved last year, is to be used to finance this year's budget deficit.


It followed elevated pressures on the public purse, following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the rolling out of measures by the government to stop the spread and mitigate the impact on lives and livelihoods.


The government also planned to use part of the proceeds to pay off existing debts that were relatively expensive and closer to maturity.

Known as liability management, the practice helps to reduce the average cost of debt and create fiscal space for the government.


Eurobonds


The country made its debut into the Eurobond market in 2007,with the latest being in March when the government successfully raised $3.025 billion in four tranches.


Thus, while Eurobonds are not new to the country, the issuance of a four-year zero-coupon tranche was an innovative market-oriented solution to address post-COVID-19 challenges and improve the cash flow required for debt servicing.

China’s Chifeng Jilong Gold Mining Cancelled an agreement to buy the Bibiani Gold mine in Ghana

 China’s Chifeng Jilong Gold Mining on Monday cancelled an agreement to buy the Bibiani gold mine in Ghana, saying it had not received timely information from the seller about the termination of the mining lease.

Australia-based Resolute Mining agreed to sell Bibiani to Chifeng Jilong for around $105 million in December, apparently extending a flurry of Chinese M&A in the gold mining sector, only to announce last month its lease had been terminated by the Ghanaian government.


The lease was restored last week under terms that did not recognise the sale.


In a filing, Chifeng Jilong said Resolute had been told in a Nov. 6 letter from Ghana’s Minister of Lands and Natural Resources that the lease had been terminated but “did not disclose” the information.


In a statement shortly afterwards Resolute said it “will continue to consider all options for the successful development or sale of Bibiani and will provide further information in accordance with continuous disclosure requirements, as required.”


A Resolute spokeswoman said the company was not available to comment. She did not respond to Reuters’ question about Chifeng’s claim that Resolute did not disclose the letter from Ghana’s mines ministry.


The Chinese firm, which urged Resolute to refund an advance payment of around $5 million, said it only found out about the minister’s letter on March 24, when Resolute announced it had received a separate letter from the Ghanaian Minerals Commission saying the lease had been terminated.


The deal would have marked Chifeng Jilong’s second overseas acquisition, after it bought a 90% stake in the Sepon gold and copper mine in Laos in 2018.


The company said the cancellation of the Bibiani deal would not adversely affect its overall business development and operations.

Shell, Chevron, Other Oil Majors Are Leaving Nigeria Market

 Fresh insights as to why the oil majors are gradually scaling down their operations and planning their exit from the country has been unraveled.



Investigation by The Nation revealed that among the oil majors, including Royal Dutch Shell, ExxonMobil, Total and Eni, are cutting billions in spending after taking hits to their profits, thus shifting money to renewable fuels and focusing only on the most cost-effective markets.


Checks by The Nation further revealed that the country was able to attract only $3 billion, or 4%, out of the $70 billion committed on new projects in Africa between 2015 and 2019, a development experts say, does not bode well for economy which relies on oil receipts to survive.


Nigeria’s loss has been the gains of other African countries such as Angola, Sao Tome and Principe, where some of the IOCs have made major investments in recent years.


In Sao Tome & Principe for instance, is now being heavily courted by oil companies from far and near. Notably, a consortium of US firms, including Chevron Texaco and ExxonMobil where among the first to secure oil license along with a Norwegian company, EER, which netted over $70million with many other prospects.


Confirming this development, Delta State Commissioner for Environment, Hon. Onogba Christian, while fielding question from our correspondent on the sidelines of the “Stakeholders Forum on The Environment” facilitated by the Institute of Directors Nigeria (IoD) Port Harcourt chapter, said oil majors like Shell, Chevron and others may have been compelled by the present socioeconomic realities that has made the current operating environment bad for their business to plan their exit from the country.


Specifically, he said: “The first ominous signs that presented itself was the deliberate efforts by the international oil companies (IOCs) to relocate their headquarters outside the Niger Delta region. When that happened few years back, it was a bad signal.


“Of course, you cannot lay all the blame on the IOCs entirely because no businessman wants to invest in an area where insecurity is a big issue. The problem really has to do with the issue third party interference, poor legislation among other factors which are genuine reasons to affect investment decisions, he stressed.


To address this issue, the government, he maintained, must ensure that there is an enabling environment for business to thrive. “I’m convinced that once there is a level of assurance that their investments can be guaranteed many of these oil managers that have exited the country will come back,” Christain assured.


Echoing similar sentiments, Chief Prof. Jasper Jumbo, Chairman/CEO, Niger Delta Projects Consortium Limited, said, “Nobody wants to do business in an environment of chaos. Once peaceful co-existence is a challenge no business can survive under such a circumstance.”


International energy companies working in Nigeria are worried that proposals in the country’s long-delayed oil industry law will deter investment in new offshore projects.


In a joint presentation, the OPTS urged lawmakers to remove a proposed hydrocarbon tax as producers will still be subject to companies income tax.


“Our review of the Petroleum Industry Bill shows that deepwater provisions do not provide a favorable environment for future investments and for the launching of new projects,” Mike Sangster, managing director of Total SE’s Nigeria unit, told lawmakers at a hearing in Abuja, the capital recently.


To boost new investment, the proposed law should grant deepwater oil projects full royalty relief for the first five years of production or a graduated royalty program, said Sangster, speaking on behalf of the Oil Producers Trade Section, a group of 30 producers including Total, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp. and Eni SpA, which he chairs.


The bill — legislation that’s two decades in the making — will streamline how Nigeria’s energy assets are operated and funded. First presented in parliament in 2008, progress in passing the bill was held up by political wrangling and objections from international oil companies that say the government is demanding an excessive increase in revenues.


The persistent failure to pass the bill “has been a major drag” on the oil and gas sector, Ahmad Lawan, president of Nigeria’s Senate, said last January as he opened two days of public hearings on the proposed legislation. The delays have harmed the country’s ability to “attract both local and foreign capital” at a time of greater competition with other resource-rich nations, he said.



Special-Agro Industrial Processing Zones Set To Commence In 7 States in Nigeria- Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has announced

 Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has announced that the Special-Agro Industrial Processing Zones (SAPZ) Programme is set to commence in seven major states.

Brand Spur Nigeria understands that Osinbajo disclosed this in a statement on Friday evening, citing that the scheme will enable Nigeria to achieve sustainability and increased trade.



However, the scheme is in collaboration with the African Development Bank (AfDB) and other stakeholders such as the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Bank of Industry.


The agro-processing centres will be provided with basic infrastructure such as water, electricity and roads as well as facilities for skills training. Small-holder farmers in the catchment areas will be linked to markets across the value chain.


To set off the plan in the opening phase, 7 States representing most of the geo-political zones in the country have been selected in addition to the Federal Capital Territory. The States are Ogun, Oyo, Imo, Cross River, Kano, Kaduna, Kwara. All the other States in the country would be added later as the scheme progresses.

Governor Obaseki Replies Finance Minister Zainab Ahmed On Printing Of N60 Billion

 1. While we do not want to join issues with the @FinMinNigeria, we believe it is our duty to offer useful advice for the benefit of our country.



2. The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, @ZShamsuna should rally Nigerians to stem the obvious fiscal slide facing our country.


3. Rather than play the Ostrich, we urge the government to take urgent steps to end the current monetary rascality, so as to prevent the prevailing economic challenge from degenerating further.


4. We believe it is imperative to approach the Nigerian project with all sense of responsibility and commitment and not play to the gallery because ultimately, time shall be the judge of us all.

President Emmanuel Macron has commended the Chairman of BUA Group After the Company Signed Deal With Axens

 The French President, Emmanuel Macron, has commended the Chairman of BUA Group, Abdul Samad Rabiu for his commitment to developing lasting relationships between French and Nigerian businesses. This came as the French Minister for Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness, Franck Riester, paid a visit to the BUA Group HQ in Lagos Nigeria where he handed over a personal invitation from President Macron to Abdul Samad Rabiu to attend the Choose France Summit in June in Paris representing business leaders from Nigeria and Africa.



The French minister also witnessed the signing of a progress acknowledgement statement between BUA Group and Axens of France for BUA’s proposed 200,000barrels per day refinery in Akwa Ibom. During the visit, it was also announced that the Chairman of BUA Group had been appointed Chairman of the France Nigeria Investment Club.


Speaking during the ceremony, the Chairman of BUA Group, Abdul Samad Rabiu thanked the Minister and President Macron for their unwavering support in bringing BUA and French businesses together. He further added that so far, BUA had initiated partnerships and have developed personal relationships with a few French businesses, including Axens whilst expressing confidence in the quality of expertise and technical know-how of the French companies BUA has partnered with.


In his comments, Jean Sentenac, President of Axens said that he is pleased that the project is advancing on schedule. He also praised the very good cooperation between all the involved parties and reiterated the commitment of Axens to delivering the BUA Refinery Project on time and with the highest standards.


Represented by Franck Riester, the French Minister for Foreign Trade and Attractiveness, Marcon invited Abdul Samad to the “Choose France Summit” and said the French Government is ever ready to support people-oriented and developmental projects in Nigeria. “I am very pleased to see how committed Abdul Samad Rabiu is for the refinery and in the space of philanthropy”. Macron said.


“I want to stress how keen you were in promoting the interest of Nigeria and its people during our meeting in Paris and how committed you were to make the economy stronger and more resilient. I want to congratulate you for the vision and ambition you demonstrate in many sectors in your will to build projects shaping the future of Nigeria.  We think that we have to support long term investment of French companies in Nigeria and Nigeria companies in France and this project of refinery is a wonderful project for Nigeria”, Macron said.


Earlier, Abdul Samad Rabiu who stated that Nigeria imports most of its crude oil consumed daily noted that BUA Refinery when fully operational will reduce the huge cost transporting crude oil offshore, refining it, and bringing it back into the country. Rabiu added that the decision to site the refinery in Akwa Ibom – Southern Nigeria was strategic due to huge availability of raw materials and its proximity to export petroleum products to regional countries.


Riester was accompanied by a high-powered delegation of Jerome Pasquier, Ambassador of France in Nigeria; Mrs Laurence Monmayrant, Consul General of France in Lagos; Quentin Teisseire, Chief of Staff, Alexis du Boisberranger, Technical advisor for export and strategic partnership; Ms Benedicte Constans, Advisor to the Minister, in Charge of Communication; Pascal Furth, Regional Economic Counsellor, French Embassy amongst others.

Nigeria Inflation Rate Increases by 18.17% YoY In March 2021, 0.82% Higher Than February 2021 Rate

 The consumer price index, (CPI) which measures inflation increased by 18.17 percent (year-on-year) in March 2021. This is 0.82 percent points higher than the rate recorded in February 2021 (17.33 percent).


Increases were recorded in all COICOP divisions that yielded the Headline index.


On month-on-month basis, the Headline index increased by 1.56 percent in March 2021. This is 0.02 percentage points higher than the rate recorded in February 2021 (1.54 percent).


The percentage change in the average composite CPI for the twelve months period ending March 2021, over the average of the CPI for the previous twelve months period was 14.55 percent, representing a 0.50 percent point increase over 14.05 percent recorded in February 2021.


The urban inflation rate increased by 18.76 percent (year-on-year) in March 2021 from 17.92 percent recorded in February 2021, while the rural inflation rate increased by 17.60 percent in March 2021 from 16.77 percent in February 2021.

On a month-on-month basis, the urban index rose by 1.60 percent in March 2021, up by 0.02 compared to the rate recorded in February 2021, while the rural index also rose by 1.52 percent in March 2021, up by 0.02 compared to the rate that was recorded in February 2021 (1.50 percent).


The corresponding twelve-month year-on-year average percentage change for the urban index is 15.15 percent in March 2021. This is higher than 14.66 percent reported in February 2021, while the corresponding rural inflation rate in March 2021 is 13.99 percent compared to 13.48 percent recorded in February 2021.


Food Index


The composite food index rose by 22.95 percent in March 2021 compared to 21.79 percent in February 2021.


This rise in the food index was caused by increases in prices of Bread and cereals, Potatoes, yam and other tubers, Meat, Vegetable, Fish, Oils and fats and fruits.


On month-on-month basis, the food sub-index increased by 1.90 percent in March 2021, up by 0.01 percent points from 1.89 percent recorded in February 2021.  


The average annual rate of change of the Food sub-index for the twelve-month period ending March 2021 over the previous twelve-month average was 17.93  percent, 0.68  percent points from the average annual rate of change recorded in February 2021 (17.25) percent.


All Items Less Farm Produce


The "All items less farm produce" or Core inflation, which excludes the prices of volatile agricultural produce stood at 12.67 percent in March 2021, up by 0.29 percent when compared with 12.38 percent recorded in February 2021.


On month-on-month basis, the core sub-index increased by 1.06 percent in March 2021. This was down by 0.15 percent when compared with 1.21 percent recorded in February 2021.


The highest increases were recorded in prices of Passenger transport by air, Medical services, Miscellaneous services relating to the dwelling, Passenger transport by road, Hospital services, Passenger transport by road, Pharmaceutical products, Paramedical services, Vehicle spare parts, Dental services, Motor cars, Maintenance and repair of personal transport equipment, and Hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishment, 


The average 12-month annual rate of change of the index was 10.01 percent for the twelve-month period ending March 2021; this is 0.76 percent points lower than 10.77 percent recorded in February 2021.


State Profiles


In analysing price movements under this section, note that the CPI is weighted by consumption expenditure patterns which differ across states. Accordingly, the weight assigned to a particular food or non-food item may differ from state to state making interstate comparisons of consumption basket inadvisable and potentially misleading.  


All Items Inflation


In March 2021, all items inflation on year on year basis was highest in Kogi (24.51%), Bauchi (22.24%) and Sokoto (20.70%), while Imo (16.08%), Kwara (15.34%) and Cross River (14.45%) recorded the slowest rise in headline Year on Year inflation.


On month on month basis however, March 2021 all items inflation was highest in Rivers (2.62%), Gombe (2.14%) and Niger (2.12%), while Zamfara (0.60%), Yobe (0.26%) and Kebbi (0.45%) recorded the slowest rise in headline month on month.


Food Inflation


In March 2021, food inflation on a year on year basis was highest in Kogi (29.71%), Sokoto (27.02%) and Ebonyi (26.59%), while Abuja (20.10%), Kebbi (19.98%) and Bauchi (18.61%) recorded the slowest rise .in year on year inflation.


On month on month basis however, March 2021 food inflation was highest in Rivers (3.52%), Niger (2.92%) and Gombe (2.85%), while Zamfara (0.51%) recording the slowest rise in month on month food inflation with Yobe and Kebbi recording price deflation or negative inflation (general decrease in the general price level of food or a negative food inflation rate).


Nigerian economy to be boosted by $5 billion investment by Qatar

 The FG has disclosed that the Middle-East nation of Qatar is set to invest in the Nigerian economy the sum of $5 billion.


The Federal Government has said that the oil-rich state of Qatar plans to invest $5 billion in the Nigerian economy.


According to a statement by the Deputy Director of Information, State House, Mr Abiodun Oladunjoye, this disclosure was made by the Federal Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema, while speaking at a farewell dinner in honour of Nigeria’s Ambassador-designate to the state of Qatar, Ambassador Yakubu Ahmed, who is also the outgoing Director of Protocol at State House.


Onyeama said that there had been discussions with Qatar on partnership with Nigeria’s Sovereign Wealth Fund, for significant investments in the region of $5 billion in the Nigerian economy.


He said, “Qatar is a weighty and strategic country and very strategic in that part of the world and we are putting our best feet forward to advance the interest of our country economically and in other areas.”




The Foreign Affairs Minister had recalled that President Buhari visited the State of Qatar in 2016 and the Emir of Qatar, His Highness Tamim Bin Hammad Al-Thani reciprocated with a State visit in 2019.



What this means


This is going to be a huge boost to Nigeria’s drive for foreign investment and help significantly in the country’s push for economic development.


Qatar which has a very high Human Development Index (HDI) is regarded as the world’s third-largest natural gas and oil reserves with a population of about 2.8 million people as of 2019.


The investment by the wealthy Middle East country will add to Nigeria’s diversification efforts as such investments are expected in the area of oil and gas, manufacturing, power/utilities and so on.




Dangote Cement Price Didn’t Exceed N2,510 In Nigerian Factories-Management of Dangote Cement Plc

 The management of Dangote Cement Plc has said its cement price has not exceeded N2,510 per bag as its Nigerian factories, adding that the rate is lower than those of other west African countries.



It made the clarification following insinuations that the company sells cement in Nigeria at significantly higher prices relative to other countries, particularly Ghana and Zambia.


During a briefing yesterday in Lagos, the company said as at April 12, 2021, a bag of cement sells for N2,450 at the Obajana and Gboko factories, and N2,510 in Ibese factory, inclusive of Value Added Tax (VAT).


Dangote’s Group Executive Director, Strategy, Portfolio Development & Capital Projects, Devakumar Edwin, said while a bag of cement sells for an equivalent of $5.1 with VAT in Nigeria, it sells for $7.2 in Ghana and $5.95 in Zambia inclusive of all taxes.


He said though the company has direct control over its ex-factory prices, it cannot control the ultimate price of cement when it gets to the market as 40 percent of the transporters of its products are third party.


He described the allegation as false, while giving the media persons present at the press conference copies of invoices from Nigeria, Cameroun, Ghana, Sierra Leone, and Zambia to verify.


“Demand for cement has risen globally as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Nigeria is no exception as a combination of monetary policy changes and low returns from the capital market has resulted in a significant increase in construction activity.


“To ensure that we meet local demand, we had to suspend exports from our recently commissioned export terminals, thereby foregoing dollar earnings. We also had to reactivate our 4.5 million tonne capacity Gboko plant which was closed four years ago and run it at a higher cost all in a bid to guarantee that we meet demand and keep the price of cement within control in the country.”


He also said the company is rounding up on the fifth line at its Obajana plant in Kogi state that will produce three million metric tonnes per annum, as well as the Okpella plant in Edo state with another 3m MT, in two and half months.


In the past 15 months, the company said production costs have risen and about 50% of the costs are linked to dollars over components import.


“Despite this, DCP has not increased ex-factory prices since December 2019 till date while prices of most other building materials have gone up significantly.


“We have only adjusted our transport rates to account for higher costs of diesel, spare parts, tyres, and truck replacement. Still, we charge our customers only N300 – 350 per bag for deliveries within a 1,200 kilometre radius. We have been responsible enough not to even attempt to cash in on the recent rise in demand to increase prices so far.”


Meanwhile on Dangote Group’s petition on sugar industry development to the federal government against BUA, another conglomerate, Edwin said: “This matter is in court and we will not like to go into details.”


Chaka App has facilitated the participation in Stock market trading in Nigeria-Chaka App has become the go-to trading platform for Nigerians

 People have considered online fraud a major problem in Nigeria for a long time now. One popular online scam, known as a 419, is to send an email, letter, text or social media message wherein the sender offers the recipient money. The offer includes a request to help transfer money in exchange for a monetary reward. Although people now practice this scam worldwide, it originated in Nigeria.



As a result, many Nigerian stock investors have a difficult time opening stock accounts. Part of the account opening process involves selecting their nationality. Oftentimes, once they select Nigerian, they flag the account without opening it. One way people try to boost their assets is by investing; however, this effectively cuts Nigeria off from the world stock markets. Nigerians continue to face exclusion from the rest of the world and its stock markets. Of African countries, Nigeria makes the most from its movie and entertainment industry and is the top in the continent. It has also become a popular place for venture capital activity and the creation of startups.


Increasing Stock Market Participation in Nigeria

Since Nigerians are not able to open a stock account on these trading platforms, Chaka created a new platform. Chaka has a design to meet Nigerians’ needs; however, it is also open to everyone. It enables Nigerians to participate in foreign stock markets, including those in the U.S., U.K., Japan and Australia. One of Chaka’s drivers is to break down global investment barriers that block Africa from the rest of the world. This makes it easier for foreign investors to invest in Africa and vice-versa.


The platform works in partnership with DriveWealth, where Nigerian investors receive an affordable way to invest in stock markets with fractional shares. They only need an email to sign up and they start with a minimum of 1,000 Naira (or $10 USD) in their digital wallet. They can then begin investing in over 40 countries and over 4,000 assets, including major companies such as Google and Apple. Local trades cost 100 Naira and global trades cost $4 USD. Although the exchange rate of the Naira does fluctuate often, Chaka solves this problem by converting it to USD. The rate is set at 9 AM and continues until 2 PM for all transactions.



Security and Regulations

Chaka is locally and internationally regulated and provides bank-level encryption for all data and transactions. A local brokerage firm provides regulations, working with the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) and Nigeria’s Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC). A U.S. brokerage firm that follows the regulations of the U.S. Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and SEC provides international regulations. Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) protects all website traffic and keeps all transactions confidential.


Users

Currently, many Nigerian stock investors are looking for foreign investment opportunities to maximize potential profit. Chaka has become the go-to trading platform for Nigerians, causing its user base to skyrocket. Chaka already has between 1 and 2 million users, a number which is growing daily.


Chaka’s future plans include branching out to other investment products from its app, such as mutual funds, fixed income products and cryptocurrencies. In a five-year partnership with NASDAQ and Airtel Africa, it will be upgrading its platform to include more listings and improve digitization. It has also received an undisclosed amount of pre-seed funding from Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, but it has not provided the exact amount.


Chaka has also partnered with DriveWealth, a company that provides Chaka with the access that it needs to U.S. markets, as well as a series of digital products. DriveWealth also allocates Chaka with some of the best technology for Nigerian stock investors to use in international trading. Thus far, the merging of the two technologies has been simple. Further, Chaka believes the partnership will last for a while. Another organization that plans to help Chaka is Citi Investment Capital Limited (CICL), which is a local stockbroking firm that can make brokerage transactions easier. In return, Chaka has assisted CICL with improving its digital products. These combined efforts will aid the country in accessing foreign stock markets and provide more opportunities for stock market participation in Nigeria.


Chaka is the best platform online to invest in Stock Exchange both in Nigeria and Oversea.

SIGN UP IN CHAKA APP 


Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Flour Mills Petition FG, Oppose New Sugar Refinery by BUA

 The Chairman, Dangote Industries Limited, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, alongside Chairman, Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, Mr. John Coumantaros, have said the establishment of a new sugar refinery plant in the country poses a threat to the attainment of the National Sugar Master Plan (NSMP) as well as sustainability of the country’s local sugar industry.




They argued that the country currently had enough refining capacity to meet national demand.

In a joint petition to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mr. Niyi Adebayo, dated January 28, 2021, the duo protested the recent commissioning of a sugar refinery in Port- Harcourt, Rivers State, which is reportedly owned by BUA International, one of the operators in the sugar industry.


However, in the ensuing row among the major players in the industry, Chairman, BUA Group, Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu, said his investment in Port Harcourt did not in any way pose a threat to the country’s sugar policy, adding that it will rather checkmate arbitrary price increase by the major players among other benefits to the country.


Adebayo, Thursday, confirmed the rancour among the operators, while reacting to THISDAY enquiry.

But he declined further comments on the matter which is already in court.

The minister said:”Unfortunately I’m unable to comment as the matter is already sub judice. Thank you very much for your understanding.”


However, in the letter to the minister, Dangote and his counterpart in Flour Millis, argued that they had in 2019, warned about the risk of establishing a new refinery, adding that they got assurances that in line with the federal government’s policy on Backward Integration Programme (BIP), “no new refinery will be allowed to operate in Nigeria”.


They also pointed out that a tremendous amount of work was required by all stakeholders to achieve the intended objective behind the sugar policy, which is to among other things, encourage backward integration to ultimately attain self-sufficiency in local sugar production.


The petitioners stated that with the new refinery, the country’s refining capacity had increased to 3.4 million metric tons per annum from 2.75 million metric tons per annum.

The petitioners further demanded for a level-playing field that provides fair competition in the local sugar market in order for the country to realise the sugar master plan.


They specifically urged Adebayo, to prevail on the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to ensure that the provisions of the NSMP were enforced and that no additional allocation of quota should be given for raw, VHP, or refined sugar for the sugar refinery in Port Harcourt for local market production.


Among other recommendations, they said no allocations should be issued or applications considered for quota intended for re-export of sugar as this would be difficult to monitor and may be open to abuse.

The petitioners added that, “An investigation should be conducted to determine the quantity of raw sugar imported by the refinery in Port Harcourt and the appropriate penalty in terms of duty (60 per cent) and levy (10 per cent) be levied on the company”.


It added that the customs should be mandated to comply strictly with the authorised quota allocations in clearing cargoes and administering levy and duty and that the CBN be requested to monitor the registration of “Form Ms” in line with the quota allocation.


They recalled that under the revised guidelines released by the National Sugar Development Council (NSDC), it was made absolutely clear that the allocation of quotas henceforth shall be on quantitative and verifiable improvements in the BIP of operators in the industry.


The petitioners alleged that the midterm assessment conducted by the NSDC had concluded that BUA had “failed to invest substantially in local production or comply with its undertakings under its BIP.

“Even before its surreptitious investment in additional refining capacity, Nigeria already has enough refining capacity to satisfy demand today well into the future.”


The petitioners maintained that the business logic behind the investment in new refinery was clearly defective adding that, “BUA intend only on importing and refining raw sugar whilst claiming to be investing in developing sugar plantations in order to qualify for quotas to import raw sugar”.

They further alleged that the Port Harcourt refinery was clearly undertaken to deliberately undermine the federal government’s sugar policy.


“We are particularly surprised by the brazenness as we believe that the choice of location and the publicity campaign behind the investment has been deliberately engineered to provoke public sentiment and pit the federal government against its people,” the petition added.


It said unless the ministry of industry, trade and investment plays an effective policing role of the NSMP, the country’s dream of becoming self-sufficient and indeed a net expoter of sugar would be defeated.


“The impunity with which BUA has contravened the provisions of the NSMP has placed the other players who are abiding by the regulations, not only at a significant disadvantage but has discouraged them from undertaking the huge investments that would deliver the desired objective of 100 per cent local production of sugar, unless, of course, the ministry wades in and addresses the situation,” it added.


Consequently, in a letter issued by Adebayo, dated February 10, 2021, which was addressed to the Chairman, BUA Group, Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu, following the petition by Dangote, the minister had requested detailed information on the BUA Sugar Refinery in Port Harcourt, particularly the company’s plan to service the Nigerian and export markets from its refineries.


BUA, in its reaction to the minister, dated February 11,2021, however, took “serious exception to the ludicrous claims by its two major competitors that it aims to circumvent the BIP of the sugar industry”.

The company pointed out in its five-page response, that it was unreasonable for it to be working against the backward integration policy of the industry, having invested billions of naira in the initiative which is almost nearing completion.


Rabiu, specifically assured that its sugar export focused project in Port Harcourt, will not affect in any way, the backward integration programme adding that “the only way it will affect Nigerians is that Nigerians will pay lower prices for sugar”.

He explained that though the Port Harcourt refinery is mainly for exports, BUA is allowed under the Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA)


Act and current approvals/rules to intervene locally in order to stabilise sugar price, “where it is absolutely necessary- in the face of arbitrary price increases and collusion to force scarcity of the product locally”.

He said:”The same NEPZA Act upon which this project is based, gives the permission to process, add value, and export at the same time. Companies under this act are allowed to process and if they so wish, sell 100 per cent of their production in Nigeria with payment of duties based on the current raw materials tariff.


“As a matter of fact, Aliko Dangote of Dangote Industries, who is one of the complainants alleging and attacking to this approval has also applied and obtained the same approval for his refinery project in Lekki, Lagos State where he is currently enjoying the same benefits of being in an Export Processing Zone (EPZ).”

He added:”What BUA sugar is doing is legal and within the confines of the law. We have not done nor are we doing anything wrong.”


Rabiu, further explained that the EPZ under which its Port Harcourt sugar project is sited went through a rigorous two-year review process before being forwarded to the ministry for approval of President Muhammadu Buhari, adding that only the president alone is constitutionally empowered to approve an EPZ license.”

According to the BUA Group Chairman:”Anything that is done to attack this project in any way, form or any guise, attacks Mr. President’s approval and we will do everything to ensure our rights are not trampled upon.”

He said BUA’s Lafiagi BIP is on track to be completed by the end of the year as well as commence production by the end of 2022.


Rabiu, also warned that any action that tampers with the current approval is capable of eroding investors confidence under the EPZ.

He disclosed that the company had spent over $250 million on the Port Harcourt project which currently employs over 1,000 Nigerians and has significant economic impact.


He said:”To try to shut it down or stifle its operations will cost jobs and lost economic impact.”

He added that BUA remained the only company of the three dorminant players, spending serious money and seeking to complete its BIP project by 2022, stressing that,” we need to start asking firm, hard questions of the two other players”.


The letter, however, urged the minister to remain firm and resolute in the discharge of his duties as he had always done adding that BUA remained committed to its obligations regarding the BIP and the NSMP,. He ssid “we believe that time has come to call all players to true account”.

Austin Russell Is Forbes Youngest Self-Made Billionaire -Forbes estimated Russell's net worth at $2.4 billion

 Austin Russell is the youngest self-made billionaire on Forbes' 2021 list of world billionaires.


- The 26-year-old runs a company that provides the technology for self-driving cars.


- Russell replaced Kylie Jenner, who was removed by Forbes in 2020 after falsifying documents about her assets.



At the fresh faced age of 26, Austin Russell has been crowned the world’s youngest self-made billionaire by Forbes, dethroning Kylie Jenner, who initially raised disputes about whether she was truly “self-made”, before facing removal entirely due to inflated figures in the documents submitted.


Here’s a quick rundown of how another college dropout managed to join the three-comma club virtually overnight.


Russell became a billionaire virtually overnight in December when his company, Luminar Technologies, was listed on the Nasdaq via an SPAC merger.


Forbes estimated Russell's net worth at $2.4 billion.


Russell received a $100,000 fellowship from the billionaire investor Peter Thiel in 2012 and dropped out of Stanford to found Luminar Technologies, which builds sensors for autonomous vehicles.


The company's sensors have been used to create self-driving cars at companies like Volvo and Toyota. Luminar's technology relies on lidar, which uses pulses of light to create a 3D map of a car's environment, allowing it to determine the best course and avoid obstacles.


In 2019, Tesla CEO Elon Musk called the technology "doomed." Instead of lidar - which has become popular with automotive companies including Alphabet's Waymo - Tesla relies on external cameras for its "Full Self-Driving" software.





Russell replaced Kylie Jenner on the list after Forbes' removed her last May, saying her net worth had been overvalued in the documents she provided.


"What am i even waking up to," she wrote in a tweet reacting to Forbes' decision. "I thought this was a reputable site.. all i see are a number of inaccurate statements and unproven assumptions lol. i've never asked for any title or tried to lie my way there EVER. period."


Jenner was on the cover of Forbes in 2018 as one of the richest self-made women in the US. That sparked backlash as some people questioned whether she was truly "self-made" because of her family's wealth.


Russell is one of four self-made billionaires on Forbes' 2021 list who are in their 20s; the others are the founders of DoorDash, Andy Fang and Stanley Tang, and the crypto investor Sam Bankman-Fried. All four are new additions to the list.


There were several developments in this year's list as COVID-19 shook up the economy. Former President Donald Trump dropped 298 spots in Forbes' ranking. Bloomberg has estimated that Trump's net worth plunged by $700 million during his presidency.


The youngest billionaire on Forbes' list was Kevin David Lehmann, 18, a German drugstore heir worth $3.3 billion.


United Nigeria Airline commences regular flights to Owerri Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport

 United Nigeria Airline will commence regular scheduled flight operations to the Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport (SMICA) on Thursday, April 8, 2021. The inaugural Owerri flight will depart the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MM2) Ikeja, Lagos state at 7.00am and terminate at SMICA. It will depart SMICA for MM2 at 11:30am.


The airline will depart SMICA at 8:30am for the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja and return to SMICA at 10:00am. This will remain a regular schedule for United Nigeria Airlines on the Owerri route.




United Airline commenced operations in February this year and during its inaugural flight, its Chairman, Dr. Obiora Okonkwo, said the short term goal was to consolidate, establish all its routes and then work on expansion. He also said the airline wants to expand beyond Nigeria, starting from the West Coast.  


“We can see that there is a gap in this industry and we have not made any mistake to make Enugu aviation hub. The state government will give us encouragement and we are driven by service to humanity. Our short term is to consolidate, establish all our routes and then work about expanding. We want to expand beyond Nigeria, starting from the West Coast.


“The market is huge and there is need for a lot of aircraft. It might surprise you to know that had full load in all the routes we operated on the day of our inaugural flight. We are prepared for the competition. Those who are in the business should be worried about because we are new. We think that within the next three months we shall be able to expand our routes,” Okonkwo said.

China has created its own digital currency, known as the Digital Yuan.

 China has created its own digital currency, known as the Digital Yuan.



A cyber yuan gives Beijing power to track spending in real-time.


Importantly, it’s money that isn’t linked to the dollar-dominated global financial system.


Cyber Yuan vs Bitcoin, Altcoins


The cyber yuan is a government-sponsored digital currency designed to track the movement of every penny. Bitcoin promotes anonymity.


Apps like Apple Pay, Venmo, Paypal, and Google Pay just facilitate payments by skipping a credit or debit card middleman. They are not their own money.


In contrast, China turned the yuan into a string of digits. It resides in cyberspace.


On a screen, it displays with a silhouette of Mao Zedong and looks just like the paper money.



First for Major Economy


A thousand years ago, when money meant coins, China invented paper currency. Now the Chinese government is minting cash digitally, in a re-imagination of money that could shake a pillar of American power.


China’s version of a digital currency is controlled by its central bank, which will issue the new electronic money.


Beijing is also positioning the digital yuan for international use and designing it to be untethered to the global financial system, where the U.S. dollar has been king since World War II.


China is embracing digitization in many forms, including money, in a bid to gain more centralized control while getting a head start on technologies of the future that it regards as up for grabs.


That an authoritarian state and U.S. rival has taken the lead to introduce a national digital currency is propelling what was once a wonky topic for cryptocurrency theorists into a point of anxiety in Washington.


Digitization wouldn’t by itself make the yuan a rival for the dollar in bank-to-bank wire transfers, analysts and economists say.


But in its new incarnation, the yuan, also known as the renminbi, could gain traction on the margins of the international financial system.


Josh Lipsky, a former International Monetary Fund staffer now at the Atlantic Council think tank, said, “Anything that threatens the dollar is a national-security issue. This threatens the dollar over the long term.”



Encouraging Use


China already has 770 million mobile payment users.


To facilitate acceptance, China conducted free money lotteries. 750,000 people got some free money in these lotteries. It is working on a method to allow the app to work without an internet connection.


Coming soon, China will require everyone to use digital currency. Paper money will be invalid.


China will know who is paying, where they are paying, and how much they are paying, and what they are buying.


The pros of this currency are: Merchants can avoid transaction fees, problems with handling cash vanish, speed while payment is immediate.


However, it has its cons which include: Privacy concerns of all sorts, governments can and will snoop, fear of things like “expiring money”.


De-Dollarization a National Security Issue?


I do cheer one thing, and that’s the de-dollarization of the global economy.


Under the guise of national security, Trump made a global mess of things for reasons that had nothing to do with security. Unilateral sanctions on Iran and Gazprom are key examples.


In general, competition is good. Soon, countries will be able to tell the US to go to hell unless there is full international cooperation.


The dollar isn’t going away and it will not be replaced by the yuan any time soon, if ever. But the end of the ability of the US to unilaterally call all the shots is on the near horizon.


That’s a welcome development. So is anything that forces the US to mind its own business

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos endorsed President Joe Biden proposal to hike US corporate tax rate

President Joe Biden has proposed hiking the US corporate tax rate to 28% from 21% to help pay for his plan to build up the country's infrastructure 

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos endorsed President Joe Biden’s focus on building up the country’s infrastructure Tuesday and said the company even supports a corporate tax rate hike to help pay for it.



Bezos’ statement, posted on the company’s website, was notable because it came after Biden singled out the company for criticism about how much it pays in federal taxes when he recently unveiled his $2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal.


Biden has proposed hiking the U.S. corporate tax rate to 28% from 21% to help pay for his plan, an idea that Republican leaders are panning as harmful to economic growth. Democrats will surely cite support from individual companies to undercut that argument.


“We recognize this investment will require concessions from all sides — both on the specifics of what’s included as well as how it gets paid for (we’re supportive of a rise in the corporate tax rate),” Bezos wrote. “We look forward to Congress and the Administration coming together to find the right, balanced solution that maintains or enhances U.S. competitiveness.”


Bezos was careful not to endorse a specific plan. Rather, he said “we support the Biden Administration’s focus on making bold investments in American infrastructure.”


The company would benefit from the investments made in roads, bridges, airports and broadband. Business groups have joined in the call for more public works investment by the federal government, but they have generally balked at Biden’s call for raising the corporate income tax, with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce describing Biden’s proposal as “dangerously misguided when it comes to how to pay for infrastructure.”


Along with partially undoing the corporate tax cut put in place during President Donald Trump’s administration, Biden also wants to set a minimum U.S. tax on overseas corporate income, and to make it harder for companies to shift earnings offshore.


Amazon has long been criticized for paying virtually no federal taxes in the U.S. for years even as it built an e-commerce empire that currently has a market value of $1.6 trillion.


That has changed slightly in recent years as the Seattle company has become more profitable. Last year, it reported paying $1.7 billion in federal taxes on its U.S. income of $20.2 billion, working out to an effective tax rate of about 8%.

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has signed a contract with a Milan based company, Tecnimont SpA for the rehabilitation of the 210,000 barrels per day Port Harcourt Refinery Company (



Recall that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) recently approved the sum of $1.5 billion (about N570 billion) for the project which has a completion timeline of between 18 and 44 months under a three-phase arrangement.


Speaking during the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract signing ceremony on Tuesday, the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari said, “Mr President promised Nigerians he will fix the refineries.”


He assured that the same transparent process has been emplaced for the rehabilitation of the Warri and Kaduna Refineries whose EPCIC contracts would be awarded in June 2021.


“We are happy to deliver on this presidential mandate. We’ll continue this process to also deliver on both Warri and Kaduna Refineries.”


“I can confirm to you that nobody has been delegated by anybody in this company to work for (the interest of) anyone other than the mandate of delivering on this rehabilitation project,” Kyari said.


The Managing Director of PHRC, Engr. Ahmed Dikko signed the contract paper for his company while the Vice President, Sub-Saharan Africa, Mr Davide Pellizola, signed on behalf of Tecnimont SpA.


Dikko explained that Phases 1 and 2 of the project would get the refinery ready to receive hydrocarbons, while Phase 3 will focus on the start-up of the refinery for operation, stressing that the entire work shall be delivered in 44 months from today.


Pelizzola, pledged the readiness of his company to work assiduously with the NNPC to comply with the terms and obligations of the contract.


Daily Trust reports that in its first-ever audited accounts and financial statements released in 2020, NNPC said three of Nigeria’s four refineries gulped N1.64 trillion in cumulative losses recorded in their operations since 2014.


The refineries have a combined production capacity of 445,000 barrels per day (bpd).


PHRC alone, which is set for repairs, has a capacity of 210,000bpd; Kaduna Refinery has 10,000bpd capacity; and Warri Refinery has 125,000bpd.

International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected growth of 2.5 percent for Nigeria this year 2021

 The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected growth of 2.5 percent for Nigeria this year indicating an increase from the one per cent it had predicted for the country in January.



The IMF in its latest World Economic Outlook titled: “Managing Divergent Recoveries,” also projected a 2.3 per cent economic growth for the country in 2022.  The Fund also anticipated a growth rate of 3.4 per cent for Africa this year, higher than the 0.2 per cent in its earlier forecast.


It noted that the pandemic continues to exact a large toll on sub-Saharan Africa (especially, for example, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa).


“Following the largest contraction ever for the region (-1.9 per cent in 2020), growth is expected to rebound to 3.4 per cent in 2021, significantly lower than the trend anticipated before the pandemic. Tourism-reliant economies will likely be the most affected,” it stated.


It further noted that some countries continue to observe high and volatile inflation and may be limited in the monetary accommodation they can provide without risking destabilising inflation.


“Rapidly rising food prices have already lifted headline inflation rates in some regions, including sub-Saharan Africa and Asia,” it added.


Furthermore, the IMF noted that economic recoveries are diverging across countries and sectors, reflecting variation in pandemic-induced disruptions and the extent of policy support.


“Global growth is projected at six per cent in 2021, moderating to 4.4 per cent in 2022. The projections for 2021 and 2022 are stronger than in the October 2020 WEO.”

Banks Unblock MTN from USSD: Reconnected MTN Customers to Banking Channels

 After 48 hours of disconnecting MTN customers from banking channels including the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data and banking apps, commercial banks on Sunday have reconnected MTN customers to banking channels, The PUNCH can confirm.



Our correspondent gathered that the development followed the intervention of the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami; and the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele.


The PUNCH had reported that the banks blocked MTN customers on Friday, leaving millions of MTN subscribers frustrated as they were unable to recharge airtime via USSD amid the Easter celebrations.


MTN, with about 77 million subscribers, making up about 45 per cent of the total telecommunication market share in Nigeria, is arguably the largest telecommunication operator in the country.


The blockade occurred when the telco reduced the banks’ commission from 4.5 per cent to 2.5 per cent. The banks had written MTN to revert to the old commission, otherwise, they would block MTN airtime in all their channels.


The banks, except Zenith Bank which was connected directly to MTN, subsequently blocked MTN from their banking channels, leaving millions of customers stranded as they were unable to recharge virtually.


MTN had explored alternative electronic payment platforms such as Flutterwave, Jumia Pay, OPay, Kuda, Carbon and BillsnPay for customer to recharge their phones.


Source : Punchnews

Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami Intervenes As MTN, Banks Trade Blame Over Shutdown

 The Nigerian government says it has intervened in a feud between Nigerian banks and MTN, which left millions of phone users unable to buy airtime Friday.



Talks to resolve a row over the sharing of fees on airtime sales between the two sides “reached an advanced stage” for suspended services to be restored, the Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, announced on Twitter late Friday.


“On the fallout between @MTNNG and some banks on USSD services today, I engaged with both regulators, the Governor of @cenbank and EVC @NgComCommission. We have reached an advanced stage of resolving the issues, for the services to be restored to our citizens. Many thanks,” he said.


Banks removed the telecom giant from their platforms, disallowing MTN users from accessing their bank accounts through the USSD infrastructure to recharge their phones.


Subscribers expressed their frustration online, as MTN advised its customers to seek alternative ways of recharging without explaining what the problem was.


A top industry official who asked not to be named told PREMIUM TIMES the banks cut off the service to protect their profits. He described the move as “tyrannical”.


“Banks have tried to remove the cost of using USSD, but are willing to cut off subscribers to protect their own fees earned through the channel,” the source said.


“This only has to do with the preservation of bank profits, which are already substantial and growing despite the wider economic conditions.”


Banks blame MTN


Bank officials who asked not to be named said they moved against MTN to curb its “excesses”.


Bank sources said MTN slashed the percentage of airtime fees that go to the banks, and refused to backtrack despite their protests.


“MTN recently reduced the discount offered to banks on airtime sales from 4.5 percent to 2.5 per cent and this did not go down well with banks considering the cost of managing the infrastructures and servicing these customers, while MTN continues to make huge spreads,” the source said.


“The truth is that if MTN gets away with this, banks should expect further reduction if not checked. Over 60 per cent of airtime vending by telcos today are done electronically through the banks,” another source said.


A source said other phone networks pay banks more than what MTN pays, yet, have not changed their rates.


MTN has done ‘nothing wrong’


MTN insiders, who also requested to speak anonymously, defended the network’s decision.


“We did a commission optimization which saw the banks commission reducing from an average of 3.5% to 2.5%. This reduction is standard because the volumes compensate for the reduction,” one source said.


“We reviewed our commissions downwards. Most of the banks are not connected to us directly but through a third party – our convenience channel partners and aggregators.


“Communication was shared with the partners who in turn wrote to the banks (the banks here are agents to the partner). Our contract with the partners allows us to do this;


“The channels were blocked yesterday midnight leaving our customers stranded. Interesting that the bank MDs met and quickly took a decision. This references our conversation around NCC standing in the gap for the industry. Subscribers to telecommunications are being denied services by the banks even when they have money in their accounts;


“Zenith Bank is connected directly to MTN – their earnings is at 2.70%. They are happy and have not blocked us.


“Banks on ‘MTN On Demand’ had an uplift in their commission from 2.0% to 2.75% yet have blocked services;


“Banks with direct connection to us through ‘MTN On Demand’ got a commission uplift.”


Another source claimed that in “advanced countries, commissions for the same services are between 0.5 to 0.75%. Even at 2.5%”.



Lingering feud over USSD


The Central Bank of Nigeria and the Nigerian Communications Commission on March 15 intervened to resolve a similar standoff between banks and telcos over USSD fees.


The USSD allows subscribers to use their mobile phones to access financial services daily.


The Association of Licensed Telecommunication Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) had said banks owed its members N42 billion and threatened to suspend service.


From March 16, subscribers paid N6.98 each time they used the USSD for banking transactions. That arrangement has angered customers and alarmed advocates of financial inclusion.


The regulators claimed the billing would “ensure a much cheaper average cost for customers to enhance financial inclusion”.

Cuba Adopts Cryptocurrency as Part of Communist Party Agenda

 Cryptocurrency is now officially part of the Communist Party agenda in Cuba. Over the weekend, Cuba’s government adopted a proposal to incl...

BINNABOOK BLOG POSTS


BINNAPARLOUR BLOG POST


MOST READ POST


COPYRIGHT: All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, written in full or in part, without written permission from BINNABOOK PUBLISHERS.But you can share through the social Media