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AfDB to develop, structure innovative finance instruments in Africa




The African Development Bank (AfDB) is collaborating with African countries to develop and structure innovative financing instruments to address insecurity and challenges to economic growth investment and development in the continent.

President of AfDB, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, said this at the fourth edition of the Africa Resilience Forum (ARF 2021), a high-level flagship event of the bank, held virtually on Tuesday.

The event had as its theme: “Covid-19 and Beyond: Working Together for a Resilient Continent”.

The event is aimed to reflect on policies and approaches that support the continent’s efforts around conflict prevention, peace, and state-building initiatives.

Adesina stressed that there was a compelling case for innovative financing mechanisms to tackle challenges that faced the continent.

He called on all partners to work towards strengthening interventions that responded to such challenges.

“Only by working together as humanitarian, peace and development partners can we, effectively, address root causes and focus on strengthening interventions that respond to what I call disaster triangle which has to do with unemployment, environmental degradation and extreme poverty.

“Wherever you find these disaster triangles, you have instability and insecurity. There is, therefore, a compelling case for innovative financing mechanisms to tackle these challenges.

“Recognising this critical link between security, economic growth, investment and development, the African Development Bank (AfDB) is collaborating with African countries to develop and structure innovative financing instruments.

“This includes security index investment banks to mobilise resources to address the root causes of insecurity and project investments and livelihoods,” he said.

The AfDB president also emphasised the need to focus on tackling the effects of climate change and reiterated the bank’s commitment to double its climate adaption finance to 25 billion dollars by 2025.

“We have expanded the percentage of financing devoted to climate adaptation from 26 per cent in 2016 to 67 per cent in 2020.”

He further stressed the need to increase investment for social protection, safety nets, and resilient and affordable healthcare systems to reduce the effects of the COVID-19 on the continent.

“We must also prioritise job creation especially for the youth that is why the bank created the Youth Entrepreneurship and Innovation Multi-Donor Trust Fund, an initiative to support Africa’s entrepreneurship ecosystems that help to create 25 million jobs by 2025.

Also, he reiterated the importance of women to further drive inclusive and resilient growth through the bank’s Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa which supported women-enabled businesses.

“To be clear, when women thrive, Africa prospers,” he emphasised.

Adesina urged Africa not be deterred by the enormous challenges facing the continent adding that resilient economies, communities and people promoted peaceful, stable and prosperous nations.

In his address, Chairperson, African Union Commission (AUC), Mr Moussa Mahamat called on African countries to remain focused and harness their human and natural resources which were “huge assets” for resilience.

“Africa’s assets for full resiliency are huge. The challenge is to reach resilience and fast-track economic growth by harnessing our natural resources and attention to our agricultural production.”

Mahamat said the pandemic had helped the continent to identify categories of population and economic sectors that were vulnerable and required a new vision for reform.

“Flagship programmes that are found in the 2063 Agenda show that gradually, on a macro management perspective, we are giving ourselves a tool for resilience, ongoing reforms and establishment of the African Continental Free Trade Area pathways for our development and self-centred growth.

“We have to count on our intra-African solidarity and promoting principles within which to set up mechanisms for shock management.

“In this regard, creating financing tools to manage this risk is vital. I call on you create all the tools because it is worthwhile and the situation calls for such tools,” he said.

He further stressed an important aspect of institutional reform which is building new forms of partnerships.

He, however, emphasised the need for reliance on the AUC’s own efforts “without turning our backs to our strategic partners”.

“That is our vision of a renaissance, of multilateralism which we are all yearning for.

“The issue of financing, particularly debt management, financing peace as well as renovating developmental aid should be raised within the framework of the rebirth of multilateralism.”

Mahamat also stressed the need to have an efficient combination of all forces of the continent for the vision of resiliency to take root in the governance, political and social practices of the continent.

ARF 2021 aims to provide a platform for sharing experiences, lessons learned, and co-create innovative solutions based on global and regional trends to address fragility and build lasting resilience on the African continent.

The three-day forum would end on Thursday. (NAN)

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Business & Economy

Senate To Probe CBN’s Anchor Borrowers, Ways And Means



Nigerian Senate
Nigerian Senate

The Senate on Tuesday, resolved to further investigate N10trn Anchor Borrowers’ Programme by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), as well as accountability in the Ways and Means loans by the Apex Bank.

The Red Chamber said the move was to plug loopholes in future development finance activities of the CBN.

The Senate resolved to set up an ad hoc committee to investigate the details of the Ways and Means, including the various intervention programmes such as the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme, monies given to state governments, manufacturers, aviation, banks, excess funding in the power sector, amongst others which raised the current debt profile of the country.

This was part of resolutions of the Senate after a debate over the report of the National Assembly Joint Committees on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions (BIOFI), Finance, National Planning, Agriculture and Appropriation on the state of the economy.

On the compliance and transparency of economic actions, the Senate equally resolved that the CBN ensured compliance with the provisions of the Act in respect of Ways and Means and accountability through timely submission of its budget, financial statements and report of its activities to the President and National Assembly as stipulated in the Act.

In an extensive debate, Senator Adamu Aliero argued that some state governors, including some retired ones in the Senate, were beneficiaries of N18bn as shock absorbers under the Ways and Means since 2015.

Some lawmakers suggested that a special committee be set up to scrutinize the N30trn intervention disbursements (some of which were grants) and ways to mop them up.

Deputy Senate President Barau Jibrin also explained that the intervention monies were expended outside appropriation without the knowledge of the parliament and noted that lawmakers have a right to interrogate the expenditure.

Senator Victor Umeh, however, deferred, as he enquired to know how the money was spent before approval by the Senate. The issue of whether or not to investigate the matter raised another furore in the Red Chamber.

Senate President Godswill Akpabio thereafter maintained that owing to the current economic situation, it has become expedient to thoroughly examine the Ways and Means funds.

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Business & Economy

Oil marketers get approval to sell Dangote fuel



Aliko Dangote



The seven major oil marketers in Nigeria have registered with the Dangote Petroleum Refinery for the lifting and distribution of refined petroleum products produced by the $20bn plant.

Dealers under the aegis of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria confirmed on Sunday that with the registration, they would commence the distribution of fuel produced from the facility once the commercial terms are sorted.

This came as the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria also revealed that they would meet with the management of the Dangote refinery this week to discuss terms of product loading.

Similarly, the Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners Association of Nigeria stated that PETROAN had been engaging the management of the multi-billion dollar refinery for the supply of products from the facility.

As IPMAN and PETROAN engage the refinery, major marketers who are members of MOMAN have already registered with the plant and are set to start buying products.

The seven major marketers include 11 Plc, Conoil Plc, Ardova Plc, MRS Oil Nigeria Plc, OVH Energy Marketing Limited, Total Nigeria Plc and NNPC Retail.

Last Friday, the Dangote Petroleum Refinery announced the commencement of production of Automotive Gas Oil, also known as diesel, and JetA1 or aviation fuel.

The President of the Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, had in a statement issued by the firm, thanked President Bola Tinubu for his support, encouragement, and thoughtful advice towards the actualisation of the project.

He also thanked the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, and Nigerians for their support and belief in the historic project.

“We have started the production of diesel and aviation fuel, and the products will be in the market within this month once we receive regulatory approvals. This is a big day for Nigeria. We are delighted to have reached this significant milestone.

“This is an important achievement for our country as it demonstrates our ability to develop and deliver large capital projects. This is a game changer for our country, and I am very fulfilled with the actualisation of this project,” Dangote stated.

The refinery, located in Lagos, has so far received six million barrels of crude oil at its two SPMs located 25km from the shore. The first crude delivery was done on December 12, 2023, and the 6th cargo was delivered on January 8, 2024.

The refinery can load 2,900 trucks a day at its truck-loading gantries. The products from the refinery will conform to Euro V specifications, according to the firm.

“The refinery design complies with the World Bank, US EPA, European emission norms, and Department of Petroleum Resources emission/effluent norms, employing state-of-the-art technology,” the company stated.

The Dangote Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemical Project, a subsidiary of Dangote Industries Limited, is a 650,000 barrels per day crude oil refinery, located in Dangote Industries Free Zone, Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos, Nigeria.

The Dangote Petroleum Refinery is an industrial plant that transforms crude oil into various usable petroleum products such as diesel, gasoline, jet fuel, and kerosene.

Dangote Petroleum Refinery with a capacity to refine 650,000 barrels of crude oil per day covers an area of approximately 2,635 hectares in the Lekki Free Trade Zone in Lagos.

When contacted and asked whether major oil marketers would be involved in the lifting of refined products from the Dangote refinery, or whether the facility would distribute the fuel itself, the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer, MOMAN, Clement Isong, replied, “I confirm that we (major marketers) have met with him (Dangote).

According to Isong, all MOMAN members have registered with Dangote Petroleum Refinery to become marketers of its products


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Business & Economy

Senate Gives Kyari, NUPRC Boss 24 Hours To Appear For Budget Defense



Mele Kyari


The Chairman of the Senate Appropriation Committee, Senator Adeola Olamilekan, on Wednesday, directed the Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), Mele Kyari, to appear before the committee in 24 hours.

Olamilekan, who asked Kyari to appear in company of the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), warned that failure to appear undermines the legislature and sabotages the process.

They are required to present the list of all individual companies operating with OML licenses in Nigeria as well as total production output approved on a daily basis.

The lawmaker expressed concerns that some of the revenues required to drive the 2024 budget was attributed to the NNPCL, which according to him, was owned by the Federal Government and responsible to it, and by extension the three arms of government.

The NNPCL, had earlier shunned for a second time, summons by the Senate to appear before its committee probing over N11trn expenditure on turn around maintenance of refineries in the country between 2010 and 2023.

The absence of Kyari, whose entity is at the centre of the investigation, stalled efforts by the Senate panel to make progress on the matter.

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