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Mobilise domestic revenue, reshape values for Africa, says WAUTI president

Mobilise domestic revenue, reshape values for Africa, says WAUTI president

Business
For Africa to develop without aids, there is the need to mobilise domestic revenue, reshape mindsets and values as well as take advantage of natural resources on the continent.  President of the West African Union of Tax Institutes (WAUTI), Gladys Simplice, stated this, saying there was a need to develop Africa for Africans. Speaking during a press briefing on a two-day 7th WAUTI conference in Lagos, themed, ‘Designing and implementing Tax Measures for the COVID-19 Era and Beyond’, Simplice said the international conference aims to deepen an understanding of the consequences on taxpayers and tax administrators while contributing to the recovery of the economies of the West African countries.  She maintained that the conference, which plans to arm affected people and firms with appropri...
Amidst climate concern, stakeholders insist oil key to Africa’s future

Amidst climate concern, stakeholders insist oil key to Africa’s future

Oil & Gas
• Growing population, dearth of investment, others worry experts   Stakeholders in Africa’s energy sector have insisted that crude oil still has a major role in the continent’s future despite growing concern over climate change. The stakeholders, who gathered at the African Refiners Association (ARA) Week 2020, however, stressed the need for clean energy transition and climate change mitigation policies to address looming challenges. They also called for investments that would enable the region to achieve a proposed 10ppm (parts per million) sulphur fuels for the pan-African transport sector by 2030. This calls for upgrade of refineries, while stringent regulation should be placed on imported petroleum products. Global think tanks, including S&P Global Platts...
Moody’s Affirms Afreximbank’s Rating

Moody’s Affirms Afreximbank’s Rating

Business
African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced that the global credit ratings agency Moody’s, recently affirmed its long-term credit rating at Baa1, with a stable outlook. The agency determines its rating for supra-nationals based on three criteria: capital adequacy, liquidity, and funding and strength of member support. Moody’s noted that Afreximbank’s credit profile was, “supported by its collateralised trade finance business model, with a short average asset maturity and a relatively well-diversified loan portfolio that allows it to respond flexibly to the coronavirus crisis.” The report added that, “the stable outlook is supported by the Bank’s successful equity-raising performance and its track record of adapting its strategy to challenges in the operating environment of...
Why refined products standard is critical to Africa

Why refined products standard is critical to Africa

Business
A move by the African Refiners & Distributors Association (ARA), and the African Union (AU), to ensure common standard for the importation and refining of petroleum products on the continent remains critical to trade, environment and the economy of the region, stakeholders said, Wednesday. Under the plan, Africa is expected to adopt harmonized AFRI Clean Fuel Specifications across. The Cleaner Fuel spec recommends adoption of AFRI five (50 ppm sulphur for gasoline and diesel) by 2025, and AFRI 6 spec (10 ppm for same products) by 2030. ARA Executive Secretary, Anibor Kragha, had told The Guardian that the objective is to stop the importation of fuels not meeting these AFRI specs into Africa by 2021, and give existing refineries until 2025 to upgrade their faciliti...
IOCs urged to mitigate impacts of Covid-19 in oil producing communities

IOCs urged to mitigate impacts of Covid-19 in oil producing communities

Energy
Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Petroleum Resources, Preye Influence Oseke, representing Southern Ijaw Federal Constituency, Bayelsa State, has urged International Oil Companies (IOCs), especially Eni Group to mitigate the impacts of Covid-19 across oil producing communities in the region. While there have been repeated advocacies and agitations aimed at ensuring oil producing communities benefit from crude oil resources, the prevailing shocks from the outbreak of Corona reportedly worsened living condition in the region, where farmland and other natural resources are threatened. Oseke noted that with lockdowns and environmental challenges hitherto faced by host communities of oil and gas exploration and exploitation activities within the context of their surrounding ecosyste...
SWOFON, CSJ Group kick against Agric budget cut

SWOFON, CSJ Group kick against Agric budget cut

Agriculture
Groups under the auspices of Small Scale Women Farmers Organization of Nigeria (SWOFON), and the Center for Social Justice (CSJ) have kicked against the downward review of the agriculture budget, as proposed by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) to the National Assembly. According to the groups, the reason for the proposed slash of the budget on agriculture was because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but maintained that the sector, if given appropriate allocation, would be a solution to the current economic downturn facing the nation. The groups maintained that instead of cutting the budget, the government should prioritise the critical sectors that are necessary for the country’s economic rebound, by channelling funds to such sectors. The National President, SWOFON, Mary Ishaya, durin...
Afreximbank Unveils $3m COVID-19 Grant for African Countries

Afreximbank Unveils $3m COVID-19 Grant for African Countries

Economy
The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced a $3 million grant to complement efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic across African countries. Afreximbank President, Prof. Benedict Oramah, who made the announcement in Cairo, recently, said the fund was in response to a request by African heads of state, through the auspices of the African Union Chair Person, Cyril Ramaphosa, President of South Africa, for the mobilisation of resources to address the pandemic. He said a significant proportion of the grant would go to the COVID-19 Special Fund set up by the African Union (AU) as well as to the African Center for Disease Control (Africa CDC). Oramah said: “We hope that our modest contribution will help to address some of the immediate needs. We encourage other African...
Nigerian Gasoline Price Review to N125 and the Pursuit of Fuel Subsidy Removal

Nigerian Gasoline Price Review to N125 and the Pursuit of Fuel Subsidy Removal

Oil & Gas
The announcement of a N20 reduction in the price of Petroleum Motor Spirit, PMS has received mixed reactions across the country. For the petroleum industry which will feel the wider impact, it has come as a big break for the downstream marketers in the country. Taking a deeper look at the recent announcement by the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, the policy gains is subject to the government retaining a free market, by setting gasoline pump prices in line with prevailing global oil prices. Despite this policy move, an immediate boost to product sales volumes in H1, 2020 is not likely due to the impact of the global coronavirus pandemic, which will affect social, religious and economic activities in major cities such as Lagos. In context there are indications that there will be incr...
AfDB Launches $3bn COVID-19 Bond

AfDB Launches $3bn COVID-19 Bond

Growth & Insight
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has raised $3 billion in a three-year bond to help alleviate the economic and social impact the Covid-19 pandemic will have on livelihoods and Africa’s economies. The Fight Covid-19 Social bond, with a three-year maturity, garnered interest from central banks and official institutions, bank treasuries, and asset managers including Socially Responsible Investors, with bids exceeding $4.6 billion. This was the largest Social Bond ever launched in international capital markets to date, and the largest US Dollar benchmark ever issued by the Bank. It will pay an interest rate of 0.75 per cent. According to a statement, the AfDB is moving to provide flexible responses aimed at lessening the severe economic and social impact of this pandemic on its re...
COVID-19: Terminal Operators Want Ports to Remain Open

COVID-19: Terminal Operators Want Ports to Remain Open

Business
Terminal operators at the nation’s seaports have stressed the need for the nation’s ports to remain open at all times while the federal and state governments battle to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Chairman, Seaport Terminal Operators Association of Nigeria (STOAN), Vicky Haastrup, who stated this in a statement explained: “As we face the global public health crisis birthed by the Coronavirus disease, otherwise known as COVID-19, we advise government to ensure that the supply chain is not disrupted and the seaports keep running. “Even if other sectors of the economy are shut down to guard against the spread of the virus, the seaports should remain open to ensure that there is no shortage of food, drugs and other essential supply to Nigerians.” This is just as t...