The Acting Managing Di
rector, Bank of Industry (BoI) Mr Waheed Olagunju, has said that community-based industrialization should be developed for the growth of nation’s economy.
Olagunju gave this advice in his address during a media parley with the theme ‘Sustaining Nigerian Industrial Sector through impactful partnerships’ in Lagos at the weekend.
He said the country was naturally endowered with several commodoities that could put boost its competitiveness as a country.
According to him, the each state has at least one mineral or crop where it has comparative advantage, and which should be explored.
The acting managing director said that could also help reduce the level of unemployment rate in the country.
Olagunju said that there was also an urgent need for the nation to boost financial inclusion to achieve an inclusive growth.
He maintained that in achieving an inclusive growth, the grassroots had to be caputured to boost products in the 774 local governments through the Nigerian Enterprise Development Programme (NEDEP).
Olagunju said, “Nigeria is the only OPEC country that still exports crude oil, and some crude non-oil products”
“There is an urgent need for us to go back to the roots instead of running about and looking for jobs.
“This is why we need the support of state governors to encourage their youths to embrace entrepreneurship, and also fulfill their part by creating an enabling environment for business to thrive in their states.
“The current government has made a promise to utilize the NEDEP and Nigerian Industrial Revolution Plan (NIRP) which are the keys to economic growth, food security and foreign exchange earnings that we need from economic diversification.”
He stressed the need for the creation of industrial clusters in each senatorial districts to reduce production and effective utilization of resources.
“We appeal that there should be at least one industrial cluster in each senatorial district where, to harness the current economic realities.
“Industrialists can still manage to share resources like electricity, factory space, knowledge, and even taxes.
“The BoI counts on the strategic partnerships with state governments, non-governmental organisations, even international organisations like the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) to drive our industrial plans, we enjoy some already, but we want more,” Olagunju said.
He also said that the bank has been working with more clusters and groups to ease its operations to loan beneficiaries, as seen in the Government Enterprise Empowerment Programme (GEEP) and the Kebbi Rice Programme.
According to him, the loans under the GEEP programme will be disbursed through groups and clusters, which will encourage teamwork and more efficient utilisation of scarce resources.
He also encouraged entrepreneurs to begin and run their businesses based on character and integrity, and with the little financial and material resources they have at hand, before seeking for loans they may not have the capacity to manage at the time.
Funds Transfers: Banks To Disconnect Non-Deposit Institutions
Banks and other financial institutions have been directed to disconnect switches, payment solution service providers, and super agents from its Instant Payment Outwards System (fund transfer channels).
The Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) disclosed this in a circular dated December 5, 2023, with Ref: NIBSS/BD/NI/PO/005/051223 to Deposit Money Banks, merchant banks, switches, mobile money operators, payment service banks, microfinance banks, and mortgage banks, among others.
The NIBSS circular, obtained on Friday, explained that listing of non-deposit taking financial institutions as beneficiaries, contravenes the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) guidelines on electronic payment of salaries, pensions, suppliers and taxes in Nigeria dated February 2014.
“Directive to disconnect switches, Payment Solution Service Providers (PSSPs) and super agents (SA) from NIBSS Instant Payment (NIP) Outwards System.
“This is to bring to your attention that listing non-deposit taking financial institutions such as switching companies (Switches), PSSPs and SA as beneficiary institutions on your NIP funds transfer channels contravenes the CBN Guidelines on Electronic Payment of Salaries, Pensions, Suppliers and Taxes in Nigeria dated February 2014.
“For clarity, Switches, PSSPS and SAs may process outward transfers as inflows to banks, but are not to receive inflows as their licenses do not permit them to hold customers’ funds”, it stated.
This means that financial technology companies (Fintechs) that appear on the NIBSS Instant Payments platform as banks receiving deposits by generating reference numbers that mimic bank accounts, and by utilizing core-banking applications, will no longer carry out such practice.
Consequently, the name of any account created by Fintechs will not appear in the lists of banks when a customer attempts to credit such an account. However, outward fund transfer will remain operational.
It further explained that the directive does not affect those Fintechs that partner with banks, and that such collaborations allow them to generate dedicated accounts that carry the bank’s name.
By: Corlins Walter
Poor Electricity Raises Production Cost By 40%
Cost of production for manufactured goods in Nigeria has risen by 40 per cent, due to poor state of electricity in the country.
This is according to a new report and research survey, carried out by Nanyang Technology University’s Centre for African Studies.
The 150-page report titled “Back to Growth: Priority Agenda for the Economic Revival of Nigeria”, was presented by the author and Director of the Centre, Amit Jain, recently in Lagos.
According to the report, the manufacturing sector has much higher productivity than agriculture and can absorb a larger proportion of the workforce.
It said a top-line analysis of the business environment in Nigeria showed that the country lacked many of the factors required to attract investment in the manufacturing sector.
For manufacturing to be competitive, the report said economic activity should, at least begin with, not deviate too far from, the country’s comparative advantage.
The report read in part, “Lack of electricity adds 40 per cent to the cost of everything in Nigeria. That hurts manufacturing the most. Firms suffer from an acute shortage of power supplies.
“Electricity blackouts, together with transport bottlenecks, crime, and corruption, are among the key impediments to firm growth. Outages and voltage fluctuations are commonplace.
“This damages machinery and equipment. Consequently, most firms rely on self-supply of electricity through the use of generators, which increases the cost of production and erodes competitiveness”.
Since guaranteeing uninterrupted power supply across the country is likely to be difficult, the report recommended that the government should consider developing industrial clusters.
According to the report, the main benefit of clustering firms is that it allows for infrastructural provision to be prioritised to give firms a competitive edge while offering access to raw materials, skilled labour, technology, and materials.
It read further, “The clusters should ideally be located within zones that are well connected with roads, power lines, and telecommunications.
“Although Nigeria has scored some success with informal clusters, such as the computer village in Otigba, Lagos; the auto and industrial spare parts fabricators in Nnewi; the leather tannery in Kano; and the footwear, leatherworks, and garment cluster in Aba, very few are working to their full potential.
“Lack of coordination between the federal and state governments and patchy implementation of industrial policy has meant that the infrastructure required to attract manufacturing investment is inadequate”.
TCN Assures Energy Delivery To Nigerian Homes
Nigerians have been assured of adequate and efficient supply of electricity to their homes.
The General Manager, Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Maiwada Sarki Bello Paiko, gave the assurance during a media chat with newsmen at the dam site in Shiroro Hydro Electric Power station, Shiroro Local Government Area, Niger State, recently.
Paiko stated that since TCN took over the affairs of transmission, the company had done well in procuring power for onward delivery to consumers.
According to him, as a private organization, TCN would not compromise on standard, noting that the company was working 24 hours to ensure steady and adequate energy.
He said, “TCN has been working round the clock to fix the aging equipment in order to avoid disruption in the daily transmission of energy.
“The company in collaboration with the World Bank had constructed a new 132 KV from Zungeru power station switch yard to Tegina, new control rooms at Shiroro, replaced over aged equipment at Jebba transmission station, and upgraded Minna sub- station with additional 132/33 KV 100MVA transformer”.
He further disclosed that during the period under review, TCN has made landmark achievements by decommissioning, installing and commissioning new six 330KV current transformer on bus coupler at Jebba T/S in January, 2023, as well as new 330KV circuit breaker on Jebba-Kainji.
While noting that there is no business without challenges, Paiko enumerated some of the challenges confronting the organization to include insecurity along Shiroro-Kaduna 330KV Lines, Shiroro-Kamtapa 330KV line, Gwagwalada 330KV line, Shiroro-Tegina 132KV line, redial nature of Shiroro-Tegina-Kontagora-Yauri line, among others.
He hinted that plans were at advance stage for the construction of additional 330KV line from Shiroro-Kaduna and PLAN Turn -IN-TURN-OUT at Tegina T/S.
Paiko attributed the successes recorded during the period under review to the unflinching support of the President Bola Tinubu led federal government and the management of TCN in the provision of an enabling environment for officers to operate.
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