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G20 Policy Makers Express Fear For Economy

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Leading policymakers were unusually candid on Friday in voicing fears that the euro zone’s financial and banking woes could derail the global economic recovery.

The troubles of Greece and other heavily indebted European governments dominated conversations ahead of a meeting of finance ministers and central bankers of the Group of 20 of the world’s top developed and emerging economies, Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said.

“It is essential to ensure continued recovery that Europe fix its banks. It is essential that certain vulnerable European nations follow through with major fiscal consolidation, and get the job done,” Flaherty told reporters in Busan, South Korea.

Gatherings such as the G20 are typically an opportunity for officials to radiate confidence, especially when financial markets are in a nervous state, as they are now.

But Flaherty was not alone in his warnings.

“We can’t afford to be complacent,” South Korean Finance Minister Yoon Jeung-hyun told the opening session.

“Without further and ongoing action from us, the recovery may not remain on track and we may not be able to achieve strong, sustainable and balanced growth,” he said.

South African Planning Minister Trevor Manuel said he could not think of a more challenging time than the present for the Group of 20. Decisions needed taking, he said, to banish the spectre of a double-dip recession.

“It’s important that we all understand just how fragile the recovery is,” Manuel, himself a former finance minister, said.

As ministers got down to work, police boats patrolled near the beach hotel where they are meeting.

Authorities have steeped up security in the southern port city in the face of war-like rhetoric on the divided peninsula after the South accused North Korea of sinking one of its warships.

The 16-nation euro zone is bailing Greece to the tune of 110 billion euros after Athens lost the confidence of bond markets and was unable to roll over its vast debts.

The euro zone, working with the International Monetary Fund, is also putting together a 750 billion euro (910 billion dollars) safety net for other member countries with big debts in case they too fail to find buyers for their bonds.

A forced debt restructuring would inflict heavy losses on euro zone banks.

Investors first responded enthusiastically to the May rescue package, but the euro has since slumped on doubts about the capacity of southern European states to plug holes in their budgets.

World stock markets have shuddered at the prospect that Europe’s woes could derail a recovery from the deepest financial crisis since the 1930s.

“Just when we thought we had turned the corner there are clouds on the horizon,” World Bank Managing Director Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala told Reuters.

But U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner sounded a more optimistic note.

“The world economy came into this period of concern about Europe with stronger underlying momentum and growth than many people expected, and we’re in a much stronger position to get through this,” Geithner told CNBC television en route to Busan.

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NSE Begins Week On Negative Note, Loses N19.49bn

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The Nigerian stock market began the week on a negative note as banking and consumer goods stocks, among others, triggered a N19.49bn loss.
At the end of trading on the floor of the Nigerian  Exchange Limited , the NGX All-Share Index dropped by 0.09 per cent to end at 43,270.94 basis points, while the market capitalisation declined to N22.58tn.
Market activities were mixed as the total volume of shares traded decreased by 30.19 per cent while the value traded rose by 34.05 per cent.
A total of 213.13 million shares valued at N2.36bn were exchanged in 4,105 deals, compared to 305.32 million shares worth N3.58bn in 4,450 deals last Friday.
FCMB Group Plc topped the traded stocks in terms of volume, accounting for 27.43 per cent of the total volume of trades while Airtel Africa Plc emerged as the most traded stock by value, representing 28.81 per cent of the total value of trades on the exchange.
14 firms gained compared to 21 losers.
AIICO Insurance Plc was the biggest gainer for the day, topping the gainers’ chart with a price appreciation of 8.57 per cent to N0.76 per share.
It was followed by LivingTrust Mortgage Bank Plc with a rise of 7.95 per cent, ending the day at N0.95 per share.
Analysing by sectors, three of the five major indices closed lower, led by NGX Oil & Gas (-0.56 per cent), NGX Consumer Goods (-0.23 per cent) and NGX Banking (0.18 per cent).
But the insurance (0.82 per cent) and industrial goods (0.002 per cent) indices gained at the end of trading.

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… Introduces TIES To Boost  Business Loan

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has introduced the Tertiary Institutions Entrepreneurship Scheme (TIES), which provides undergraduates and graduates with a platform to access loans.
The TIES’ underlying aim is to provide access to capital for Nigerian undergraduates and graduates with innovative entrepreneurial and technological ideas from polytechnics and universities.
TIES intends to shift undergraduates and graduates away from white-collar job pursuits and towards a culture of entrepreneurship development for economic development and job creation.
In a national biennial entrepreneurship competition, the Developmental Component would be distributed in the form of awards to Nigerian polytechnics and universities.
The competition aims to increase undergraduates’ awareness and visibility of high-impact entrepreneurial/technological concepts, foster entrepreneurial talent hunts in Nigerian polytechnics and universities, and encourage commercially viable and transformative technologies.
Interested Nigerian polytechnics and universities shall apply to participate in the national biennial entrepreneurship competition on a dedicated online portal.
Outlining brief details of the project, potential impact and evidence of originality of project, CBN said it is an innovation for students entrepreneurs.

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CITN Applauds FG, Tax Authorities On Fiscal Policy Decisions

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The Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) has lauded the Federal Government and tax authorities on the giant strides made on fiscal policy decisions and tax administration measures initiated this year in the area of Finance Act 2021 and the introduction of TaxPromax solution.
President of the institute, Adesina Adedayo, who gave the commendation at the institute’s yearly award ceremony at the weekend in Lagos, assured the government and tax authorities of aligning with the measures and promised to provide professional thoughts and insights on ways through which they could achieve an efficient and effective Nigerian tax system.
Adedayo emphasised the need to address the database, adding that without knowing who the tax-payers are, there is no way they can take money from unknown tax-payers.
Database is the aspect we have been emphasising on as an institute and in doing this, there are so many of pockets of data we have. All the data must be harmonised to have a simple unique tax-payers identification number,” he said.

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