Economy

FG to stop importation of steel materials – Minister

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The Federal Government on Thursday, said it planned to stop the importation of steel materials into the county to encourage local investors in the sector.

Mr Olamilekan Adegbite, Minister of Mines and Steel Development, said this during a familiarisation visit to Kam Industries Limited, a privately owned steel industry in Ilorin.

Adegbite added that the government would stop the importation of steel materials into the country once it attained self sufficiency in steel production.

The Nigeria News Agency , reports that KAM Industries Limited is an indigenous manufacturing company that specialises in the production of cold roll, steel coil, nails, binding wires, galvanising and color roofing sheets.

The company which was registered in 1996, also manufactures British Reinforcement Concrete (BRC) Mesh wire, binding wire, bale tiles, drawn wire, and straightening wires among others.

“My ultimate aim is that we ban steel importation into the country totally.

“But then, before we do that, we must be able to satisfy local consumption from local production and have some excess for export; that is where we are heading,” the minister said.

He said it was necessary for local private investors to invest in the country’s steel sector rather than foreigners, to avoid capital flight.

The minister expressed satisfaction over the level of production in the industry, saying that it was something that should be emulated by well meaning Nigerians.

He also expressed optimism that if such a company was replicated in other parts of the country, cases of banditry and other anti-social vices would be reduced.

“It is impressive, I have been to see our own steel plant at Ajaokuta, though it may not be working now, but I have been shown the processes.

“Coming here, I can see a functional one, of course with a similar process; this is very commendable.

“For a private entrepreneur to do this, providing employment for more than 4,000 people, it is very impressive and it is worth my coming here today.

“Our dreams and hopes for the Nigeria steel industry was built on Ajaokuta, and it has become something very emotional to the whole country,” Adegbite said.

He, expressed optimism that with the support of President Muhammadu Buhari, Ajaokuta Steel Company would bounce back and would produce steel before the end of the current administration.

He noted that though the ministry was responsible for steel production and development in the country, it was not in control of the quality of steel that was coming into the country.

He, however, said the ministry was working with the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON),the agency saddled with the responsibility of standard control, to ensure that steel brought into the country met international standards.

NAN reports that the minister earlier paid a visit on Gov. Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, of Kwara.

Mr Kayode Alabi, the state Deputy Governor, who received the minister on behalf of , appealed to the Federal Government to help identify mineral resources in the state and to ensure exploration for national development.

Alabi noted that while the state had a lot of unidentified mineral resources, those identified were being mined illegally, adding that there was need for the Federal Government to help address the situation.

“We have a lot of mineral deposits in the state and we will want you to follow up to ensure exploration,” he said.

He said the state was very proud of Kam industries because it gave employment to its people.

NAN further reports that from its humble beginning as a manufacturing company, Kam industries had grown into one of the largest independently owned nail and wire producing company in the country.

During the good days of Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited, Kam used to be the biggest buyer of its coil.

The company started its backward integration in 2011 when it started the construction of its 150,000 tonnes per annum Cold Rolled Mill (CRM).

The CRM is completed and running and it consists of slitting line, pickling line, cold reduction mill, galvanising line, rewinding, cum trimming line, cut to length, and corrugated machines.

It also has water and waste treatment facilities among others.

The industry had applied to the Mining Cadastral Office (MCO) for the grant of 11 exploration licences in Kogi.

Four of the applications had been granted while the remaining seven were still being processed.

The company had also identified a suitable limestone deposit in Kogi, which would be explored and mined to supply required flux material for liquid steel production.

Edited by Nyisom Fiyigon Dore

Economy

Shareholders seek more mergers, acquisitions in cement industry

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Shareholders under the aegis of Constance Shareholders’ Association of Nigeria (CSAN) on Saturday said that mergers and acquisitions would improve cement industry activities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).

Mr Shehu Mikail, CSAN National President, stated this in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Lagos.

Mikail spoke against the backdrop of the consolidation between the Cement Company of Northern Nigeria (CCNN) and BUA’s Obu Cement.

He said that the merger would further eradicate a monopolised cement industry and ease the marketing processes, thereby improving shareholder’s returns.

Mikail described the merger as a great development that would help in breaking the monopoly of price control in the industry.

“The recent event that occurred between CCNN and Obu cement in Nigeria is a great development that will help in alleviating the cement problems in Nigeria as well as breaking the monopoly of price control,” he said.

He commended the Chairman of BUA Group, Mr Abdul Samad Rabiu, for the great vision aimed at ameliorating the suffering of people.

“We have the confidence that such strategies of the businesses would also help the cement industry in equities flow in the Nigeria Capital Market,” Mikail said.

NAN reports that the BUA Group, one of Africa’s largest conglomerates, in October announced plan to merge its two million metric tons of CCNN with six million metric tons of Obu Cement in a bid to consolidate its cement business.

The plan, according to the company, is aimed at enhancing the growth of cement industry in the country.

Edited by: Oluwole Sogunle

(NAN)

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Economy

Eko Disco records highest remittance efficiency in Q2, says NERC

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The Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC), on Saturday, said Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) recorded the highest remittance efficiency of 43.3 per cent in the second quarter of 2019.

The Second Quarter Report was obtained by the Nigeria News Agency in Lagos from the website of NERC.

NERC also said Jos and Kaduna DisCos had the lowest performance of 13.1 per cent and 13.5 per cent respectively during the same period.

The commission also expressed concern over the significant drop in Enugu DisCo’s remittance rate from 30.44 per cent in Q1 2019 to 24.55 per cent in Q2 2019.

NERC said: “The challenge of low remittance to the market is still a concern to the commission as it is one of the main causes of the liquidity crisis facing the Nigerian electricity supply industry.

“As highlighted in the preceding quarters, low remittance adversely affects the ability of the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading (NBET) Plc to honour its financial obligations to GenCos.

“Service providers; Transmission Service Provider (TSP), Market Operator (MO) and NERC also struggle with the paucity of funds, which is impacting their capacity to perform their statutory obligations.

“The individual performance indicates that, with the exception of Enugu and Ibadan DisCos, the DisCos recorded increase in their remittance performance in the second quarter of 2019.

“Also, the aggregate combined invoice settlement rate for all DisCos rose to 30.6 per cent. However, none of the DisCos remitted up to 50 per cent of their market invoice.”

The commission noted that DisCos must improve their efforts towards reducing Aggregate Technical, Commercial and Collection (ATC&C) losses to levels commensurate with their performance agreements.

It said Ikeja Electric recorded the highest progress in reducing ATC&C losses, decreasing to 25.9 per cent in the second quarter of 2019.

NERC said seven other DisCos, excluding Abuja, Enugu and Yola, also recorded relative improvements in their ATC&C losses during the quarter under review.

Edited by: Taiye Agbaje/Salif Atojoko

(NAN)

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Economy

Expert urges Nigerians to imbibe savings culture

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Mr Bayonle Omoyele, the Executive Director, Reliance Thrift and Credit Cooperative Society, has advised Nigerians to imbibe savings culture in order to contribute to the nation’s economic development.

Omoyele gave the advice at the first Annual General Meeting of the cooperative on Saturday in Abuja, with the theme, “Cooperative: A tool for Economic Development”.

He said that investment and savings play important role in the growth and development of any nation.

“For this nation to grow we need to save and that is where cooperative society becomes useful.

“Nigerians should be encouraged to save for the rainy day so that it becomes an integral part of our culture.

“It will also improve our level of investments and, in turn, we will be able to employ more people, thereby improving the economy of our country.”

Omoyele also urged Nigerians to save their money with credible and registered cooperative societies in order not to be duped by criminals.

He said that the society, on its part, would introduce a digital system, where customers would receive alert immediately they drop their money for savings.

Mr Olugbesan Idris, the Executive Director, Regent Microfinance Bank, underscored the importance of cooperatives in the country.

Idris said that cooperatives would help to raise the living standards of Nigerians.

He further said that cooperatives help to create better opportunities for all along with the platform that helps to reduce inequality between the rich and poor.

Nigeria News Agency reports that highpoint of the event was the distribution of gift items to customers, award presentations and raffle draw.

(Edited by: Sam Oditah)

(NAN)

 

 

 

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Economy

FG reiterates commitment to give priority to development of textile industry

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The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Amb. Mariam Katagum, said that the Federal Government would give priority to development of the textile industry.

The minister said this in a statement issued on Friday in Abuja by Mrs Oluwakemi Ogunmakinwa, the Assistant Director of Press in the ministry.

The minister of state said that it was essential to make Nigeria an exporter of finished products.

Katagum spoke when a delegation of investors from China led by the Treasurer of Kano State Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, Alhaji Umar Ibrahim visited her in Abuja.

She expressed delight with the Chinese investors who indicated interest to develop the textile industry in Kano.

According to her, Kano is known to be a historic centre for the textile industry, particularly the traditional dying art technology that has been there for many decades.

Katagum further assured of the Federal Government’s commitment to support the Kano State Government and the Chinese investors for the development of the textile industry.

She added that the support was in line with the current administration’s Economic Growth and Recovery Plan (ERGP) policy.

Earlier, Ibrahim said the purpose of the visit was to seek collaboration with the ministry for the development of the country’s textile industry.

He explained that Kano State Government in partnership with Dantata Group of Companies was working assiduously to ensure that Nigeria’s textile industry was developed to support the country’s economic diversification plan.

Edited by: Ese E. Ekama

(NAN)

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Economy

Maintenance: AEDC notifies power interruption in parts of Abuja, Kano

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The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC),  says customers in parts of Central Area, Abuja will experience power interruption on Dec. 14 and 15 due to maintenance of its facility. .

AEDC’s General Manager, Coporate Communication, Mr 0yebode Fadipe said this in a statement in Abuja on Friday.

Fadipe said that the areas to be affected by the interruption  which would commence from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. include Wuse Zone 1-7, Maitama and some parts  of Kano.

He said that the interruption was to enable the Abuja Region of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) maintenance team in conjunction with AEDC undertake the replacement of a punctured 132 kilo Volt  XLPE cable on the Katampe – Central Area 132kV Line 1.

Fadipe  said  that the  scope of work had  been planned to last for three weekends in order to minimise the period of interruption of power supply to  customers within the affected areas.

“The decision to embark on the replacement of the cable is gratifying as it will engender improved service  to customers.

“Our customers who had hitherto been experiencing loadshedding can now look forward to longer hours of power supply after the replacement of the cable, which is situated at the back of the IBB Golf Course

“We appeal for patience and understanding of the affected customers as the replacement of the cable is expected to be completed on Dec. 29,” he said.

Edited by: Ese E. Ekama

(NAN)

 

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