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Naira rebounds, exchanges for 420/$, speculators count losses

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images 36 Naira rebounds, exchanges for 420/$, speculators count losses

The naira exchanged to the dollar at the parallel market at N 420 /$ on Wednesday , following the interventions made by the Central Bank of Nigeria in the Investors and Exporters window .
Prior to CBN ’s renewed intervention in the I & E window on Monday , the naira exchanged for as high as N 480 to the dollar .
Speculators in Nigeria ’ s foreign exchange market would count huge losses as the naira continued to surge against the dollar , experts have said .
The CBN had said that it would also resume the sale of foreign exchange to operators of Bureau de Change from September 7 .
Speaking on the issue in a statement entitled , “ Forex : Speculators set to count losses, ” the Director , Corporate Communications Department at the CBN , Isaac Okorafor, said the bank had concluded plans to inject liquidity into the foreign exchange market by selling forex to licensed BDC operators.
He said the sale to BDCs would be gradual and be done twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays , and that the BDCs had been directed to ensure that their accounts with their banks were adequately funded to ensure seamless transactions.
While warning speculators to desist from what he termed unpatriotic tendencies , Okorafor urged registered BDCs to comply with the CBN guidelines as the bank would not hesitate in sanctioning any erring dealer.
He also assured that those requiring foreign exchange for purposes of travel, educational fees and other invisibles could obtain such over the counter from their respective banks.

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Fidelity Bank Restates Support for SMEs

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images 2020 09 28T101531.256 Fidelity Bank Restates Support for SMEs

Fidelity Bank Plc has pledged its continued support for the micro, small and medium enterprise (MSMEs) sector whose activities were disrupted in the heat of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Bank made the disclosure recently at the 13th edition of the Annual Banking and Finance Conference of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN).

Speaking at one of the panel sessions, Divisional Head, SME Banking Division, Osaigbovo Omorogbe, said the bank’s commitment was borne out of the realisation that SMEs are the engine room of any economy.

“The ability of MSMEs to stay on sustainably at this time, and even become more attractive for various types of funding support will undoubtedly be strengthened with deepened capacity building support, both on the back and front office ends”.

He explained that there was a compelling need for relevant stakeholders to deepen capacity-building support for MSMEs in various areas, ahead of funding support, to enable them position more strongly to stay afloat and even grow in the new normal.

While insisting that a one-size-fits-all capacity building model/approach for MSMEs would no longer help, Omorogbe stressed the need for more tailored capacity building support that will take into account the peculiarities and challenges MSMEs are facing; first on account of the pandemic and secondly because of the respective economic sectors they play in, their supply and distribution chains, the geographical locations they operate from and cover, etc.

He advocated for stronger collaboration amongst all stakeholders who have roles to play in ensuring MSMEs get and enjoy the much needed support they require at this time, in various areas, to further ensure the MSME segment not only survives the times but also gets set firmly, on the path of sustainable growth.

Over the years, Fidelity Bank has leveraged the myriad intervention/development funding schemes typically offered at single digit interest rates by local and international Development Finance Institution (DFIs), for the benefit of its SME customers. Specifically, the Bank has through the efforts of its SME Banking Division, continued to build structures and systems to channel low-cost intervention/development funding to MSMEs including women entrepreneurs, to tame the ‘high-cost-of-funds’ challenge small businesses face in this market.

As at mid-September 2020, the Bank in its capacity as a participating financial institution (PFI) in the Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) on lending scheme for SMEs and small corporates, has disbursed a total of N21.9 billion to a large number of SMEs and small corporates playing in diverse sectors.

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CIBN Recertifies NDIC’s Academy

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download 16 CIBN Recertifies NDIC’s Academy

The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) Academy has been recertified and its accreditation renewed as a training service provider for various professionals in the banking industry for the next three years effective June, 2020, by the Council of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN).

The recertification, according to the Head of the five-man CIBN Accreditation Team, Mr. Saubana Ogunpola, followed the exemplary performance of the NDIC Academy since it initial accreditation in 2016 and the satisfaction of the stringent conditions for the recertification. He noted there would be periodic monitoring to ensure that quality standards are being adhered to.

A statement quoted Ogunpola to have commended the NDIC for its consistent efforts toward meeting high standards for the benefit of the banking industry and the larger economy.

He described the NDIC’s readiness to subject itself to the rigors of the Institute’s accreditation process as a testimony of its Management’s commitment to capacity development for all stakeholders.

Reacting to the development, NDIC’s Managing Director/Chief Executive, Mr. Umaru Ibrahim described the recertification as another milestone in the NDIC efforts to consolidate the position of the Academy as a center of academic excellence in the nation’s banking industry and on deposit insurance in Africa.

Ibrahim disclosed that the Academy had so far trained a total of 13,368 participants cut across the NDIC’s workforce. It had also trained 135 participants from relevant stakeholders, including the EFCC, Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), Assets Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON), National Pension Commission (PENCOM) and the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).

On the international front, 19 employees from sister deposit insurance agencies in African had benefitted from the expertise of the Academy

He stated that the NDIC Academy has been designated to host the African Centre for Studies on Deposit Insurance System (ACSDIS) recently established by the Africa Regional Committee (ARC) of the International Association of Deposit Insurance (IADI).

Ibrahim reiterated that with the recertification, the NDIC Academy is positioned to fulfill the NDIC’s goal of serving as a center of excellence for capacity building on Deposit Insurance Scheme (DIS) for countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. He added that the NDIC prides itself on establishing the highest standards of professionalism and competency among its staff through the NDIC Academy and other human capital development initiatives, including the Chartered Banker/MBA program at Bangor University, Wales in partnership with the CIBN.

The NDIC boss emphasiSed that the corporation places high premium on capacity building and continuous high level training of its staff to achieve the NDIC mandate of deposit guarantee, bank supervision, bank distress resolution and liquidation. The ultimate goal, he said, would be to enhance depositor protection and public confidence in the nation’s banking system.

CIBN

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Popoola Wants Role for Credit Bureau in CBN’s Intervention Fund Disbursement

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images 2020 09 28T095730.905 Popoola Wants Role for Credit Bureau in CBN’s Intervention Fund Disbursement

The access, impact and prospects of the intervention funds by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) formed the basis of discussion at a recent webinar organised by the CRC Credit Bureau.

The webinar was part of the firm’s CSR initiative that serves as an avenue to enlighten members of the public on issues around financial literacy and the Bank’s policies.

The Managing Director/ CEO, CRC Credit Bureau, Dr. ‘Tunde Popoola, said: “As at now most of the intervention funds, especially by the state governments are disbursed without reference to the credit bureaus. Even after disbursement, such data are not submitted to the credit bureaus.

“What happens is that wrong people or non-targeted platforms may be the beneficiaries of the intervention funds”

Popoola further advocated that data of beneficiaries be submitted to the credit bureau, saying it would help in collection and repayment, alongside improve access to non-government funds for credit beneficiaries as well as instill discipline to the repayment process.

Presenting the intervention funds as one of the key mandate of the CBN, Dr. Chinedu Zephaniah, of its Development Finance Department, said the Bank was positioned to promote a sound financial system, stimulate key sectors and facilitate investment in critical infrastructure that will assist development alongside deployment of finance to specific focal centres.

For him, the grand aim of development financing is to increase impact, achieve employment elasticity in some sectors of the economy and diversify the economic base of the economy.

“Our focus is on agriculture, manufacturing, specialised products for MSMEs, infrastructure and then power. These are the sectors that when we intervene, we have a wider range of effects to the economy.

“In all, CBN has disbursed over N1.5 trillion in terms of facilities. CBN will continue to focus on the priority sectors of the economy using particularly agriculture and manufacturing through a range of direct policy and indirect policy interventions, alongside direct funding of these sectors.

“We will take advantage of the COVID-19 and turn its difficulties into opportunities,” he explained.

Presenting fund management and project implementation as some of the duties of Bank of Industry, the Executive Director of Bank of Industry, Mr. Simon Araronu, during his session moved on to explain that BOI also plays a monetary role in overseeing that the funds are returned back to the fund owner, the CBN as at when due.

According to Araronu, the four core intervention funds managed at the BoI include power and airline, SMes, industry finds and textile intervention funds.

“Following the COVID-19 development, there was need for palliative. CBN was very proactive and offered a reduction in interest rate.

“Right now, the interest rate for the aforementioned intervention funds have gone down from nine per cent to five per cent for one year.

“The idea behind it is to provide palliative to players in this sector. For projects under implementation, CBN granted a one-year extension of moratorium from March 1, to February 28, 2021,” he added.

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