Economy

Buhari welcomes investments from Japan Bank, Toyota Group

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday welcomed the interest shown by the Japan Bank for International Cooperation  and the Toyota Group to  support projects in which Japanese companies are involved in Nigeria.

The president made his feelings known at an investment talks with top officials of Japan Bank for International Cooperation, and Toyota Group, at the margins of the Seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD 7), holding in Yokohama, Japan.

Mr Femi Adesina, the President’s spokesman in a statement in Abuja, said the Japan Bank for International Cooperation was led by its Deputy Governor, Mr Nobumitsu Hayashi at the meeting.

Adesina quoted Hayashi as telling the Nigerian leader that the bank had lots of resources dedicated for investment in Nigeria, and would be particularly interested in oil and gas, and investments in infrastructure.

President Buhari welcomed the bank, informing the team that Nigeria had introduced the Ease of Doing Business, and bureaucratic bottlenecks were being cleared off the way.

According to Kashitani, Toyota Tsusho wishes to also build an advanced medical diagnostics centre, which will foreclose need for foreign travel to obtain cutting edge medical diagnosis.

President Buhari urged the group to also consider setting up a car assembly plant, noting that Nigeria had the capacity to absorb the investment for positive returns.

At another meeting with the Prime Minister of Algeria, Noureddine Bedoui, President Buhari counseled that the political programme in the country be faithfully executed, which would lead to general elections as soon as possible.

“Algeria is a good pan-Africanist nation, with a lot of influence over the continent,” the President said.

Prime Minister Bedoui said dialogue was in progress with all stakeholders leading to elections, hopefully by end of the year.

edited by Sadiya Hamza

Economy

Traders, customers commend `quick money’ agent banking in markets, business areas

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Some traders and customers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have lauded the establishments of  Point of Sale (PoS) agent banking operations in business and densely populated areas in Abuja.

Some of them, who spoke to Nigeria News Agency in Abuja Municipal Area Council on Tuesday, said the development had contributed to their brisk businesses and increased patronage.

Mr Anthony Idike, a business man along Mararaba, said the idea was a welcomed development which had made money transfers easier and better for their businesses.

He noted that the move had encouraged `cashless policy’ among citizens.

Before the introduction of these agents in the markets and business areas, people will ask you if you have PoS machine and if you do not have, they will go to another shop with the machine.

But since some banks set up their agents here, we direct them to the agents to withdraw money and come back to buy whatever they want.

This has improved patronage of our businesses because it has made it easier for customers to make purchases with ease,’’ he said.

Mrs Lilian Oko, a dealer in baby wares at the Nyanya market, commended the quick money operations in the market.

Oko noted that the quick money operations came as a relief to many sellers in the market.

I accept bank transfers only for customers I am familiar with.

Most times, I do not accept money transfers from customers I do not know anymore because after purchase, the bank will not send the alert to you immediately and when the customer goes away with your wares, you might not get the alert from your bank.

If you tell many of them to wait until you get the transfer alert from your bank, they become irritated.

This quick money agents came as a relief to me especially because if a customer suggests bank transfer now, I will plead with the person to use the agents and this does not take time at all,’’ she said.

A customer and user of the service said the operation had made shopping easier for her and the family.

I am very happy about the introduction of this service.

I am one person that hates standing on Automated Teller Machine (ATM) queues but since these people started operating, I cannot remember the last time I visited my bank.

They even do both deposit and withdrawal and their services are genuine and reliable.

A banker in one of the banks’ who preferred anonymity, said the move was to make banking easier, better and promote financial inclusion among citizens.

The banker noted that the services would keep improving to make banking easier for the common man.

NAN correspondent who visited some of the agents’ stand, reports that the users of the service were charged between N100 and N500 depending on the amount withdrawn or deposited.

NAN reports that customers were charged between N100 and N200 for every N10, 000 deposited or withdrawn and between N250 and N400 for every N20, 000 and N50, 000 withdrawn or deposited.

Edited by: Cecilia Odey/Maureen Atuonwu
(NAN)

 

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Economy

Yuletide: Tailors engage customers’ patronage

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Barely two weeks to Christmas, some tailors in Makurdi say they have been working to cope with demands from customers for quick collection of their sewn dresses.

Some of them told Nigeria News Agency in Makurdi on Tuesday that they were no longer accepting clothing materials from customers being overwhelmed with their demands.

Mrs Chinenye Eze of Awe street Wurukum, said that she had only two girls helping her in the shop and she needed to work late into the night to meet up with her customers’ demands.

Chinenye said that she decided to stop collecting cloths from new customers to avoid problems.

I almost had a confrontation with one of my customers on Monday because her children’s cloths were not ready for collection and the date I gave her had passed,” she said.

She complained that the price of sewing materials had increased in the market and she decided to increase the amount for sewing.

For female gown that I previously sewed for N2,000, I now sew for N2, 500, a skirt and blouse that I sewed for N3,000 now attracts N4,000 while children’s cloths that were sewn for N1,500 went up to N2,000,” she explained.

Mr Dogo Suleiman in Wurukum, who specialises in male wears, said that he had been sleeping in his shop with his apprentices just to meet up with customers demand.

Dogo said that some customers actually brought their clothing materials for sewing in November so as not to be disappointed when they would come to collect them.

According to him, the combined efforts of himself, his apprentices does not seem to be yielding the desired results that will enable him to finish the work on his hands to travel for Christmas.

I have stopped collecting cloths from customers to enable me to finish the ones I have on ground to avoid embarrassment from customers.

Though my charges are not that expensive, I sew plain tops for boys between N1, 500 and N2,000 each, but if it is designed, it is sewn for between N2,500 and N3,000.

Some hair dressing saloon operators, who also sold “weave-on hair attachments”, said they were experiencing trade boom.

Miss Jennifer Terfa of Vandeikya street, Makurdi, said that the sales had been good, adding that she had been selling well since the beginning of December.

According to her, each weave-on attachment is between N1,000 and N1,500 although there are different varieties of the product to suit customers taste.

Edited by: Philip Dzeremo/Kayode Olaitan
(NAN)

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Economy

Insurance ladies; association commends women’s role in industry

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The Professional Insurance Ladies Association (PILA) on Tuesday commended its members for their roles in the insurance industry.

The association’s president, Mrs Ose Oluyanwo,  gave the commendation on the sideline of the  2019 Induction of Fellows and Associates of Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN).

She told the Nigeria News Agency that women were already taking over the insurance industry due to their commitment, loyalty and stability.

Women are taking over. In fact, we have already taken over the insurance industry and as evidence; three out of the five people awarded the CIIN fellows are females.

Also for the Associate award, there are more females than males; and women are getting to the point where no one discriminates against them anymore.

“On the boards of insurance firms, out of the eight or 10 members, you will have four women among them,” she said.

According to her, this is because women are very loyal, more reliable, stable, multitasking and they do not breach the trust reposed in them.

Oluyanwo said that “everyone is seen as a man in the insurance sector, they are drilled and expected to deliver.’’

She said that the association has a lot of mentoring programmes in place to motivate young female insurers and students on how they could become successful in the industry.

We usually attach the female inductees to mentors who will mould them to become successful people.

We have so many female members in the industry who had in the past emerged presidents of different associations and we want to keep the flag flying high,” she said.

The president said that the association used to organise annual career building programme for the Senior Secondary School girls to encourage them to pursue insurance as a career.

Oluyanwo said that the industry had begun to appreciate the contributions of  PILA toward  promoting  the industry.

 

She urged female insurers to acquire more knowledge, intensify hard work, support one another and do away with the pull her down syndrome to enable them achieve more achievements.

Edited by: Abdullahi Mohammed/Peter Dada
(NAN)

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Economy

Agency urges newly appointed FIRS boss to maintain revenue pace

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The National Cooperative Financing Agency of Nigeria (CFAN,) has advised the newly appointed Chairman of Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr Muhammad Nami to maintain increased revenue tempo of the service.

Mr Emmanuel Atama, the Executive Secretary of CFAN told Nigeria News Agency on Tuesday in Abuja that maintaining the improved revenue tempo would enrich the country.

NAN recalls that President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday approved the exit of Mr Babatunde Fowler as the chairman of FIRS following the expiration of his tenure.

The President named Nami, a tax consultant, as the new chairman of the service.

Atama commended Buhari for the prompt appointment, noting that the government was at liberty to appoint anyone at any time.

As far as I am concerned, FIRS overtime has maintained the tempo of increase in revenue generation for the country.

Whoever that is coming should continue to sustain the tempo or do more than that.

The government has the liberty to appoint anyone it wants. The man that just finished his tenure took over from somebody so there is room for choice.

We hope that whoever that is coming in will make the best use of the office for the good of the country,’’ he said.

The executive secretary appealed to the Federal Government to judiciously use the increase in Value Added tax (VAT) from five to 7.5 per cent to effectively finance infrastructure development.

Government can finance infrastructure for the benefit of citizens only when they have enough resources at its disposal.

My prayer is that if VAT is increased, the revenue should be carefully used to ensure that citizens get value for what they are paying for,’’ he said.

NAN reports that Buhari also approved the composition of a new board for FIRS, subject to the confirmation of the Senate.

Edited by: Chinyere Bassey/Ese E. Ekama
(NAN)

 

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Economy

Bello presents 2020 Budget of N148.2bn to Niger Assembly

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Gov. Abubakar Bello of Niger on Tuesday presented a budget of N148.211 billion for the 2020 fiscal year to the state House of Assembly.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the budget, which is N194.698 billion (13.2 per cent) lower than the 2019 budget, has been christened “Budget of Inclusion for Sustainable Development.”

A breakdown of the budget showed that N78.243 billion (52.79 per cent) was allocated to capital expenditure, while N69.968 billion (47.21 per cent) was earmarked for recurrent expenditure.

The general administration was allocated N5.472 billion; economic sector, N51.836 billion; social sector, N19.757 billion; and law and justice, N1.777 billion all from the capital expenditure.

Bello explained that the 2020 budget is anchored on completion of projects in line with the yearnings and aspirations of the people.

As we strive to consolidate and improve on the gains recorded so far, we shall focus on completing all ongoing projects.

Town hall meetings were organised to receive inputs from the citizens into the budget making process. This is in line with our commitment of enhancing people’s participation in governance,” he added.

According to him, the budget would be funded with revenues from statutory allocation, capital receipts, value added tax and refunds from constructed Federal Government roads.

Others are refund from pension fund administrators, dividends from North South Power and refund from National Electricity Liability Company.

The Speaker of the House, Alhaji Abdullahi Wuse, lauded the achievements of the Bello administration in the last four years across all sectors.

Wuse said the house would ensure the passage of the bill in record time to enable the state government consolidate on its achievements.

He called for more concerted efforts to tackle security challenges ravaging parts of the state.

I, therefore, urge the security agents in the state to maximally deploy their skills and tackle the challenges to enable our electorate return to their homes.

“It is my prayer that Niger state will come out of the security challenge in no distant time,” he added.

Edited by: Shittu Obassa/Ismail Abdulaziz
(NAN)

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Economy

Bello presents 2020 Budget of N148.2bn to Niger Assembly

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Gov. Abubakar Bello of Niger on Tuesday presented a budget of N148.211 billion for the 2020 fiscal year to the state House of Assembly.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the budget, which is N194.698 billion (13.2 per cent) lower than the 2019 budget, has been christened “Budget of Inclusion for Sustainable Development.”

A breakdown of the budget showed that N78.243 billion (52.79 per cent) was allocated to capital expenditure, while N69.968 billion (47.21 per cent) was earmarked for recurrent expenditure.

The general administration was allocated N5.472 billion; economic sector, N51.836 billion; social sector, N19.757 billion; and law and justice, N1.777 billion all from the capital expenditure.

Bello explained that the 2020 budget is anchored on completion of projects in line with the yearnings and aspirations of the people.

As we strive to consolidate and improve on the gains recorded so far, we shall focus on completing all ongoing projects.

Town hall meetings were organised to receive inputs from the citizens into the budget making process. This is in line with our commitment of enhancing people’s participation in governance,” he added.

According to him, the budget would be funded with revenues from statutory allocation, capital receipts, value added tax and refunds from constructed Federal Government roads.

Others are refund from pension fund administrators, dividends from North South Power and refund from National Electricity Liability Company.

The Speaker of the House, Alhaji Abdullahi Wuse, lauded the achievements of the Bello administration in the last four years across all sectors.

Wuse said the house would ensure the passage of the bill in record time to enable the state government consolidate on its achievements.

He called for more concerted efforts to tackle security challenges ravaging parts of the state.

I, therefore, urge the security agents in the state to maximally deploy their skills and tackle the challenges to enable our electorate return to their homes.

“It is my prayer that Niger state will come out of the security challenge in no distant time,” he added.

Edited by: Shittu Obassa/Ismail Abdulaziz
(NAN)

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Economy

Unemployment: Embrace vocations, entrepreneur tells youths

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The Chief Executive Officer of Kuhlbox Drinks Logistics, Mr Adedamola Ogunwomoju, has urged Nigerian youths to engage in vocations that will enable them become self employed and employers of labour.

Ogunwomoju told the Nigeria News Agency in Ibadan on Tuesday that it was advisable for youths to embrace vocations before graduating from higher institutions.

When a skill is acquired, there will be something to fall back on if one does not get a job with a certificate.

This is our reality right now, there are no jobs. The jobs that are available are for the connected and you need some level of experience to be qualified for some jobs.

The reality of our situation right now explains the emergence of many CEOs and small scale business owners.

I cannot outrightly say that it pays to be an entrepreneur than having a regular job in Nigeria these days.

Being an entrepreneur is not easy; I can tell you there will be some trying times.

If you are making money under the present economic situation as an entrepreneur, it is either you have some deep connections or you have been in that line of business for quite a while,” he said.

Ogunwomoju, however, said that consistency and zeal were pivotal in sustaining any business in Nigeria.

(Edited by: Mufutau Ojo)
(NAN)

 

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Economy

SMEDAN trains 500 entrepreneurs in Oyo

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Mrs Iyabo Ojogbede, the Oyo State Manager of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), says the agency trained more than 500 entrepreneurs in the state in 2019 to improve their productivity.

Ojogbede stated this in Ibadan on Tuesday while speaking on the agency’s activities in 2019.

She said there were numerous platforms provided for people in the state to enhance their businesses as well as boost economic opportunities.

” After the training, we do empower the entrepreneurs by giving them equipment to start their businesses.

As for the existing businesses, most times they complain to us about their need for workspace.

Even cooperative groups are catered for; we provide them with workspace through this programme called One Local Government One Product Scheme (OLP).

We provide workspace, capital and equipmen to each cooperative we disbursed funds) to; we give 70 percent of loan and 30 percent grant for each cooperative and there is no interest on it.

” Through CBN’s Agricultural Business Small Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme loan, we have been training entrepreneurs in our agency,” she said.

Ojogbede noted that most applications received for the CBN loan had been forwarded to NIRSAL Microfinance Bank saddled  with disbursement of funds.

She further stated that funds had been disbursed to about 55 percent of the applicants out of the 355 entrepreneurs that applied for  loans in the state.

(Edited by: Mufutau Ojo)
(NAN)

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Economy

2020 budget: expert sets 90% implementation target for FG

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Mr Godwin Eohoi, an economic expert has urged the Federal Government to ensure that about 90 per cent of the 2020 budget is implemented following its early passage by the National Assembly.

Eohoi, also the Registrar Institute of Finance and Control of Nigeria (IFCN) said this while speaking with the Nigeria News Agency in Abuja on Tuesday.

The registrar, who was reacting to the early passage of the 2020 appropriation bill, explained that with the passage, President Muhammadu Buhari-led government had no excuse in ensuring the full implementation of the bill.

He said that since the legislative arm of government had played its part, Buhari should look at the estimates and assent to it as soon as possible without delay.

According to him, Nigeria has one of the best budgets in the world but implementation is usually the problem.

Now that the 2020 appropriation bill has been passed into law, we should be hopeful and targeting 90 per cent implementation, it shouldn’t be 50 per cent or thereabout as experienced in the past.

This is a good development for the country for the National Assembly to pass the budget in record time.

This has shown the kind of cordial relationship that exists between the legislature and executive which is good for economic planning in the country.

The president has made the promise of bringing the country’s budget to 12 months calendar circle, that is to have it run from January to December.

I can see that Buhari means business because he is now working with lawmakers to redeem his pledge,’’ he said.

The expert noted that if this was adhered to, this arrangement would help importers and exporters to have a good planning.

He commended the legislature and Buhari for this stride, adding that if sustained, it would help to boost the economy of the country.

Edited by: Ese E. Ekama
(NAN)

 

 

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