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Foreign Investors Free To Repatriate Their Funds – CBN

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has assured investors interested in repatriating their funds from Nigeria that they can do so safely.

CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele gave the assurance in Abuja over the weekend.

He guaranteed investors that they can get their money out of the country “not withstanding the drop in the revenue from crude oil.”

Emefiele noted that the apex bank “had put in place policies to ensure an orderly exit for those that might be interested in doing so.”

He, however, urged investors to be patient “as such repatriations are processed, owing to the Bank’s policy of orderly exit of investments.”

According to the Governor, the foreign exchange available would be devoted to strategic importion or service obligations that are priority.

Recalling a similar situation that occurred in 2015 over declining revenue, Emefiele said the CBN was able to settle all commitments in an orderly manner.

Speaking on the plans of the Bank to tackle the economic impact of the COVID-19, he said the CBN, in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, was committed to galvanizing the manufacturing sector to reset the economy.

He disclosed that the CBN had met with the banks, manufacturers in the health sector and the larger manufacturing group.

The challenge posed by the pandemic he said has necessitated that, “as leaders, the fiscal and monetary authorities must work together to moderate the health and economic impact of the COVID-19.”

Emefiele said the COVID-19 presented Nigeria with an opportunity “to reset the economy and as such there was need for the country to prepare itself to get the manufacturing sector to work, while the banking sector supports the economy.”

With the drop in revenue from crude oil sale, the CBN Governor said Nigeria had no choice “but to diversify its economic base.”

He said: “The time had come for Nigerians to produce what can be produced in the country and consume what is produced in the country.”
The Nation

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NERC: Over 1m Electricity Consumers Have Received Prepaid Meters

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Labour Warns FG Against Electricity Tariff Hike 

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The Nigeria Labour Congress faulted plans to allegedly sell the Transmission Company of Nigeria, saying it will lead to an increase in electricity tariff.

The NLC President, Mr Ayuba Wabba, said this in a statement titled, “This Kite will not Fly’’ on Friday.

Wabba explained that instead of allegedly planning to sell the transmission company, FG should focus on improving the electricity supply.

He described the attempt to hand over the TCN to a few ‘privileged’ Nigerians as self-serving, obtuse, odious, morally reprehensible and criminal.

The NLC president said, “The TCN is a strategic economic asset of immense national security implications. This is because the TCN traverses all nooks and crannies of Nigeria.

“It will be wrong that our country will be deliberately exposed to an avoidable vulnerability and thus, provide an opportunity to others to restrain the Nigerian state.

“We apprehend that the planned sale of the TCN is only an attempt to further confound the people and concurrently raise electricity tariff. Unfortunately, this time around, Nigerians have had enough.

“The government cannot promise improved power supply to consumers by the planned sale of TCN. The under-the-table scheming as transparent privatisation cannot pass muster.

“It is an unsavoury narrative for our country, that even the privatised assets, which have survived the rapacity of the new owners, have been turned into unrealisable collaterals for unpayable loans.

“This constitutes a bone stuck in the throat of financial institutions and sundry creditors.”

Wabba explained that the plan would “fundamentally weaken the security of the nation and above all, deprive the people of their age-old investments in the commanding heights of the Nigerian economy”.

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FG To Consider Death Penalty For Rail Vandals – Amaechi

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The federal government says it may consider a death penalty for vandals of critical railway equipment in the country.

Rotimi Ameachi, minister of transportation, stated this on Monday, during a town hall meeting on “protecting public infrastructure” in Abuja.

On May 8, the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) announced the arrest of two persons suspected of vandalising rail tracks along the Kaduna-Zaria rail line.

Few days later, suspected vandals were arrested for destroying and carting away tracks and rail rods laid on a section of the Warri-Itakpe rail line.

On May 16, the Kaduna state police command said it arrested five suspected rail-trail vandals at Dalle Village of Jema’a LGA and recovered two trucks loaded with locomotive railway sleepers.

After the Warri-Itakpe incident, the senate asked the federal government and security agencies to ensure that those caught vandalising rail lines across Nigeria are given maximum punishment without a fine.

”I am not quantifying the material cost; what I am quantifying is the lives that will be lost,” Ameachi said at the town hall meeting.

“Imagine that a driver of a rail track is driving and suddenly bumps into a track that has been severed, what happens? It will derail.

“If it derails, can you quantify how many passengers that would have died in the course of one man thinking he is making money?

”Some people have recommended that since these people are killing people, if an accident happens people will die, so we should go back to the National Assembly and pass a law that does not only criminalise the action but consequences should be death.”

The minister also said track vandalism is carried out in collaboration with foreign partners.

”In Jos, they arrested a Chinese company that bought those tracks from them, went to court and found them guilty and fined them N200, 000. So there must be consequences as N200,000 is not enough,” he added.

“Lagos and the Western District recorded one, North Western 31, Northern District 10, North Eastern 43, Eastern 36 and North Central 50 incidents of vandalism. Abuja-Kaduna has 13, Warri-Itakpe 2 and Lagos -Ibadan nill.”

Amaechi, who frowned at traders selling items on railway tracks, especially in Port Harcourt and Lagos, advised individuals engaging in the practice to desist or face the penalties.

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