The Central Bank’s bimonthly auction last week witnessed a total subscription of N307.3 billion in treasury bills, a sharp drop from N513.43 billion demanded at the previous auction.
Market watchers have attributed the drop to the declining interest of offshore investors in domestic debt holdings. Offshore investors due to high inflation and the depreciating value of local currency choose to sell their local debt holdings and re-invest their funds abroad thus putting further pressure on local currency, market analysts have said.
The apex bank sold a total of N126.3 billion in treasury bills ranging from three months to one year with higher yields on the paper than at the previous auction.
Specifically the treasury bill market witnessed N30.65 billion worth of 91 day bills sold at the rate of 13.50 per cent against 13.19 per cent the previous auction while N45.00 and N50.68 billion worth of 182 day and 364 day bills at the rate of 14.14 per cent and 14.30 per cent respectively compared with the 13.87 per cent and 13.94 per cent at the previous auction.
At the Over-The-Counter (OTC) bond market investment was on the downside with a recorded volume of 100.532 million units valued at N89.61 billion in 672 deals in comparism with a turnover of 131.542 million units of Nigerian Sovereign bonds at the value of N121.239 billion in 935 transactions at the previous auction.
The nation’s interbank lending rate last week plunged to an average of 10.41 per cent against 14.66 per cent in the preceding week. The secured Open Buy Back (OBB) dropped to 10.25 per cent compared with 14 per cent it stood at the preceding week representing 175 basis points lower than Central Bank’s 12 per cent benchmark rate and 0.25 percentage points above the Standing Deposit Facility (SDF) rate.
Also, overnight placement and call money nosedived to 10.50 per cent each as against 15 per cent each of the previous week.
Market watchers say about N278 billion, portion of budgetary allocations for States and local governments entered the market last week.
At the start of business last Friday, the market had a cash balance of N387 billion a sharp comparism with the N32 billion at which it opened last week according to reports.
The equities market of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), the bears were on top of the game as market capitalisation of listed equities depreciated by N47 billion to close at N7.090 trillion having opened the week at N7.137 trillion.
Also the benchmark index which tracks the value of listed shares the All Share Index (ASI) plunged by 0.66 per cent, to finish at 22,232.36 basis points as against its opening of 22,381.11 basis points.
Three of the NSE Sectorial Indices also tilted Southwards. The NSE 30 index, a barometer for tracking the 30 most capitalised companies on the exchange dropped by 0.28 per cent.
The NSE Consumer Goods Index dipped by 1.75 per cent even as the NSE Oil/Gas Index depreciated by 2.41 per cent.
On the flipside, the NSE Banking Index rose by 0.22 per cent while NSE Insurance Index went up by 0.13 per cent according to the NSE weekly report.
The overall economy, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) surged by 6.17 per cent compared with 7.68 per cent of the fourth quarter of 2011.
Oil production fell to an average of 2.35 million barrels per day (bpd) in the first quarter as against 2.4 million bpd in the fourth quarter of 2011m the NBS report noted.
FG To Eradicate Multiple Taxation In Mining Sector – Adegbite
The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite, says the Federal Government is setting in place various measures to eradicate multiple taxation for miners.
At the flagship Forum last Tuesday in Abuja, Adegbite said the ministry was engaging with the three tiers of government to resolve this issue.
He said that this informed the recent webinars and advocacy engagements by the ministry with all stakeholders in the country involved in the mining industry.
He said that though the constitution vested control of mineral resources in Nigeria in the Federal Government, the fund goes into the Federation Account, of which everybody participates.
He added that all the 774 local governments got money from that account but if they cut corners by disturbing the miners with unnecessary local taxes they get discouraged.
“So, it is double jeopardy when you go and do all these illegal taxes, or you go and disturb the miners, when you will benefit from what is derived in your place, you get a 13 per cent derivation.
“You also get your share of the federal accounts as of course laid down statutorily. So, it is a continuous process, we educate everybody and I think we are getting good results.”
The minister said there was a Mineral Resource Committee (MIRENCO) in every state and the chairman was nominated by the governor of that state, so that he would be in the know about everything going on about mining in that state.
He said that the chairman of that committee was to oversee all the activities between the miners, the community, the state government and the Federal Government.
“So, on that committee, the Federal Government has representatives, the local government has representatives, the governor chooses the chairman and then Ministry of Environment and other stakeholders bring in representatives as well.
“So, through this committee, everybody can participate, and make sure that we work in harmony, bake a bigger pie so everybody can share.
“So, it is continuous advocacy, we let them know what we are doing and of course they can also participate, where they do not understand or where the governor has any problem he can always ask the chairman.”
On the issue of rock blasting, he said cities had expanded to meet quarries.
According to him, quarrying is a necessity, because stones are needed to make concrete when building roads and houses.
Nigeria Lost N53.26bn To Gas Flaring In Two Months – NNPC
Nigeria lost an estimated N53.26billion in the first two months of this year as international oil companies and local players flared a total of 33.04 billion standard cubic feet of natural gas.
The oil companies wasted 17.53 billion scf of gas in February, compared to 15.51 billion scf in January, according to data obtained from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.
With the price of natural gas put at $3.93 per 1,000scf as of Wednesday, the 33.04 billion scf flared translates to an estimated loss of $129.85million or N53.26billion (using the official exchange rate of N410.13/dollar).
The NNPC, in its latest monthly report, said out of the 206.05 billion scf produced in February, a total of 133.06 billion scf was commercialised, consisting of 40.15 billion scf and 92.91 billion scf for the domestic and export market respectively.
It said this implied that 64.48 per cent of the average daily gas produced was commercialised while the balance of 35.52 per cent was re-injected, used as upstream fuel gas or flared.
Gas flare rate was 7.67 per cent in February (i.e. 565.52 million standard cubic feet per day), compared to 7.73 per cent in January (i.e. 554.01 million scfd).
In January, a total of 223.55 billion scf of natural gas was produced, translating to an average daily production of 7,220.22 million scfd.
Out of the total gas output in January, a total of 149.24 billion scf was commercialised, consisting of 44.29 billion scf and 104.95 billion scf for the domestic and export markets respectively.
Firms producing less than 10,000 barrels of oil per day will pay a gas flare penalty of $0.5 per 1,000 scf.
The penalties paid by oil and gas companies for flaring gas in the country will be invested to build midstream gas infrastructure in host communities, according to a new provision introduced into the Petroleum Industry Bill by the National Assembly.
“Moneys received from gas flaring penalties by the commission (Nigerian Upstream Regulatory Commission) pursuant to this subsection, shall be transferred to the Midstream Gas Infrastructure Fund for investment in midstream gas infrastructure within the host communities of the settlor on which the penalties are levied,” the Senate and House of Representatives said in subsection (4) of section 104 of the bill.
Nigeria To Boost Trade Volume Through ECOWAS TPOs
Nigeria is poised to boost its non-oil exports following the official launch of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Trade Promotion Organisations (PTOs).
With Executive Director /CEO of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) Segun Awolowo, as the inaugural president of the ECOWAS TPOs, the NEPC is repositioning the nation’s export through the implementation of its N50 billion Export Expansion Facility Programme (EEFP), a part of the Economic Sustainability Plan whose development and implementation is being led by the Vice President.
EEFP is expected to significantly raise the volume of non-oil exports in Nigeria, and it’s a spin-off of the Zero Oil Plan developed by Awolowo and approved by the President.
Besides providing financial support for the average Nigerian exporter, EEFP is also going to see the establishment of top-notch warehouses close to airports where Nigerian goods meant for export would be packaged to globally competitive standards ahead of their exportation.
The EEFP, in line with the FG’sEconomic Sustainability Plan (ESP), is focused on cushioning the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on non-oil export businesses,thereby safeguarding jobs and creating new ones.
In March, Minister of Industry,Tradeand Investment (MITI), Niyi Adebayo, officially flagged off the EEFP and launched the first online Grant Management Portal (GMP) for non-oil exports.
While the EEFP is being implemented by the NEPC, the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment is the supervisory body over the agency and its operations.
It was learnt although the programme anticipated 500 beneficiaries, since the launch, it has received over 3,500 applications for the grant, out of which over 2,000 were verified after meeting the eligibility criteria.
Federal Government officials said further details and plans on disbursement to final successful beneficiaries are being awaited.
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