The Nigerian Association for Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA), has urged the Federal Government to prioritise the revitalisation of the industrial sector to engender inclusive growth.
Ide John Udeagbala, National President, NACCIMA, made the call at the Chamber’s fourth quarter state of the economy news conference on Thursday in Lagos.
Udeagbala said the call was pertinent because statistics showed that 83 million people (about 40 per cent) lived below the poverty line with additional 53 million people (about 25 per cent) being vulnerable.
These indices, he said, called for great concern and urged governments across all levels to create and maintain an enabling environment that was investment friendly.
This, the NACCIMA president said, entailed enunciating and maintaining policies that removed bottlenecks to business investments.
“There’s the need to address the various factors that are capable of increasing cost of doing business in Nigeria.
“These are critical issues which if addressed urgently will help position the economy for foreign direct investment and encourage local investors to establish industries that will enhance job creation and improved Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” he said.
On inflation, Udeagbala acknowledging the decision of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria to raise the Monetary Policy Rate from 14 per cent to 15.5 per cent, said the move did not address the root causes of inflation.
According to him, rising costs due to factors such as naira depreciation, high energy and transportation costs could not simply be controlled by adjustment to the monetary policy rate.
“Factors such as multiple exchange rates, stringent policy bottlenecks in obtaining foreign exchange for investments and production of goods and services, the security challenges need to be urgently addressed if inflation must be nipped in the bud.
“Fiscal policies and public expenditure controls at various government levels during this electioneering period will add to keep inflationary rate in check.
“Furthermore, the implementation of the CBN’s interventions in the agriculture, manufacturing, energy, healthcare and export sectors will be more impactful on the economy.
“This will further ensure inclusive growth and development of Nigerian economy,” he said.
Udeagbala also charged government to ensure that the country’s borrowings were done on terms consistent with entrenching debt sustainability, with the borrowed funds productively invested in value adding sectors of the economy.
This, he explained, was necessary for the country to outgrow its debt problem, restore creditworthiness and achieve sustainable growth.
He also expressed concerns over the increasing level of unemployment and brain drain with the migration of trained skilled workers, particularly the youth overseas.
These human capital exports, he said, had raised many concerns about the deprivation of trained and qualified human capital for many of Nigeria’s struggling sectors including health, information technology, banking and others.
“More worrisome to this trend is the indication that the exodus does not appear to have an end in sight any time soon as there are no tangible signs that government is focusing on efforts to create employment opportunities that would reverse the trend.
“It is our hope that governments at all levels will appreciate the need to support the business sector, especially the Organized Private Sector, which NACCIMA represents to enable our members do more in creating jobs,” he said.
The Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Mr Clem Agba has urged tax administrators in Sub-Saharan African countries to discover ways of effectively generating and improving tax revenues.
Agba gave the advice at the Seventh African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF) General Assembly, organised by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) on Tuesday in Lagos.
The forum had “Rethinking Revenue Strategies: The Human Face of Taxation’’, as its theme.
Agba, represented by the Statistician General of the Federation, Mr Semiu Adeniran said that statistics showed that sub Saharan African countries still mobilised less than 17 per cent of their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) without revenue.
According to him, this is below the recommended minimum level of 20 per cent by the UN, as necessary to achieving the sustainable development goals.
“According to the World Bank tax revenues, above 15 per cent of a country’s GDP is a key ingredient for economic growth and ultimately the option of revenue.
“Clearly, there is a gap between available tax resources and the need to improve, to foster sustainable economic growth and development, it’s imperative to restrategize and rethink concept and dynamics of tax and taxation.
“We must ask the relevant questions that hold the potentials to unlock for us, a new focus and a new trust that will fashion a pragmatic way forward,’’ he said.
He also agreed with the theme of the event, adding that human face of taxation must be a more sustainable and effective way of achieving tax reform and the optimisation of revenue and fostering voluntary compliance.
Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State said the state was constantly on the lookout for ways of increasing its internally generated revenue without burdening the existing tax base.
“Over the past few years, and despite the documented global challenges, we have made notable developmental strides, relying mostly on internally generated revenue as a primary source of funding.
“We have amongst others, embarked on major transformational infrastructure projects, cutting across transport, health, education, agriculture, technology, and so on.
“These major infrastructural interventions are designed to improve the quality of life of our citizens and re-engineer the economic growth and development trajectory for improved productivity of our citizenry, which invariably improves our tax generating abilities,’’ he said.
The governor added that one of other critical areas of development had been in environmental protection, waste management and disposal, which had been prioritised with the hope to continue to build on.
Earlier, Mr Muhammad Nami, Executive Chairman, FIRS and President, Commonwealth Association of Tax Administration (CATA) said: “If we must transform our tax system and enhance revenue collection in Africa, there is need for government at all levels to engender public confidence and trust in government by providing value for taxpayers money.
“More importantly, the government should reconsider how projects are reported in the public space and the expected impact it will have on the tax paying culture.
“Such reports should be communicated to convey the idea that tax payer’s money is used to fund infrastructural projects,’’ he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the forum, which will end Nov. 4, has over 40 African countries participating in the deliberations.
Sen. Bola Tinubu, Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), said the cooperation and support of the private sector was required to implement the reforms in his economic master-plan.
Tinubu said this at the APC’s campaign council town hall meeting and dialogue with the Business Community on Tuesday in Lagos.
He noted that during his tenure as governor of Lagos between 1999 and 2007, his administration developed a largely successful blueprint.
He explained that the success of his tenure turned the state into a safer, more prosperous place, for any legitimate venture irrespective of person, religion, region or ethnicity.
“We opened the door for Nigerians to witness the same thing as we work hand in hand with the business community sharing the same goal of prosperity and renewed hope.
“I now stand before you seeking a bigger yet similar job; the similar practical work that improved Lagos is what I want to bring to the nation.
“The task ahead is difficult but doable and I need you to help this come through,” he said.
The APC Presidential Candidate commended the efforts of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration, saying that the government performed with patriotism and commitment during trying times.
He, however, stressed the need to go further and faster, via his experience in both public and private sector to renew hopes and rebuff the despair of Nigerians.
Tinubu reeled some of his economic blueprint to include the revival of the nation’s industries by bringing the nation’s industrial policy to life through creation of major and minor industrial hubs in each of the geographical zones to grow faster from bottom up.
He added that his team would foster productive excellence in areas such as light manufacturing, the creative industry, with active participation in the digital economy to birth the fourth industrial revolution.
Tinubu said his administration, if given the opportunity to be president, would target a minimum Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of between six to ten per cent.
He furthered said the requisite reforms to champion productivity in the agricultural sector for increased exports and provision of food for the ordinary citizen would be done.
“We must produce, then buy made in Nigeria; we shall make Nigeria a leader instead of a bystander.
“We seek consumer credit revolution, affordable credit for businesses and the business sector shall increase in so many folds.
“It took a lot to start the dream and realise the goal of that sea port.
For land and water management – all catchment areas must be studied to stem all problems,” he said.
Tinubu also expressed his determination to provide constant electricity, expand infrastructure from roads to ports, lands, and deep sea ports.
“I am determined to give you affordable and reliable power to light the entire economy as we cannot produce without constant electricity.
“We have what it takes to bring it to you all; we have the gas, sun, wind and water.
“As for petroleum subsidy, it has to be removed and my administration would see to the implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA),” he said.
To tackle the country’s security challenges, Tinubu expressed his readiness to fight terrorism via counterterrorism.
He stated that his administration’s response to the country’s insecurity shall be defined by elements such as enlisting more people into the military, police, and other security forces.
He added that he would provide area and ground surveillance, identify, monitor and defeat the evil groups anywhere in the country.
“We shall have no respite until they surrender.
A nation is not driven by itself but the content and the people that reside in it.
“Nigeria would move, crush all enemies, and bring progress and prosperity for today and tomorrow,” he said.
The former governor of Lagos said his tenure would push for gender balance through more women inclusion in the composition of his administration and decision making processes.
Sen. Kashim Shettima, Vice-Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), said the administration would with its comprehensive economic plan combat insecurity by adopting proactive intelligence driven approach.
This, he said, was in recognition that security was a great determinant to private sector investments.
Shettima said the administration was prepared to make the required investments as part of the mandate to take the nation to greater heights.
He added that the team was committed to improving electricity generation to about 20, 000 megawatts to drive economic growth.
“There would be reforms to drive investments in renewable energy and we would introduce policies that ensure the transmission and generation of power.
“The time has come for Nigeria to manufacture and the administration would align for local manufacturing as we cannot be dependent on importation.
“Adequate investments and consideration would be given to the agriculture, education, and healthcare sectors.
“We would address the inadequate health infrastructure to tackle high mortality, dependence on imported medicines and vaccines,” he said.
Harnessing Africa’s natural resources for industrial and economic growth Harnessing Africa’s natural resources for industrial and economic growth A News Analysis by Chidi Opara, News Agency of Nigeria Companies grow through proper funding and investment and nations develop through good policies that inspire investment and industrialisation.
A nation is said to be under-developed if it is unable to meet the economic, social, health and other needs of its citizens.
Unfortunately, this is the fate of most African countries today.
According to experts, development is achieved by improving the standards of living of citizens, raising their per capita income; industries and investments are the factors that drive that goal.
Industries enhance productivity, generate employment, and create wealth.
Countries invest in activities and policies that engender economic development and increase Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Industrial development remains one of the instruments to realise that.
Conversely, countries lacking in industries risk mass unemployment, low per capita income, extreme poverty and under-development.
It was against this background that United States Latino American Chamber of Commerce (USLACC), organised African and Foreign Investment Trade Summit (AFRIFITS) in Abuja to stimulate Africa’s economic growth.
The theme of the event was “Promotion of African Businesses, Synergy and Match Making Foreign Investments.
” Speaking at the event, the President of USLACC, Dr Manolo Cevallos, said the goal of AFRIFITS was to market Africa as the world’s hub of industrialisation.
He said that African economic growth was achievable if only foreign investors, Africans in Diaspora and African business communities unite to invest in the continent.
Cevallos represented at the event by Mrs Ifeoma Ejiogu, a USLAAC staff, said that AFRIFITS also aimed to contribute to the reform of African nations’ economy with a view to accelerating international trade and investment.
He said that an African Region of USLAAC was meant to promote Africa’s international trade potential.
Ejiogu said the world’s attention was now turning to Africa to unlock the next wave of global business and economic opportunities with its largely untapped human and material resources.
Mr Bethran Uzodinma, an industrialist advised that to make Africa one of the global industry hubs policy makers need to project its market strengths such as its largely youthful population and huge mineral deposits to the investing community.
Mr Uche Egenti of the Nigeria Building and Road Research Institute (NBRRI) called on Nigerian entrepreneurs to rise to the challenge of the continent’s socio-economic development.
“It is time for Africa to be industrialised.
The government cannot do everything.
It is time to reason together and develop concepts that will catapult Africa to the world,” Egenti said.
This view has been echoed by African leaders at different fora.
For instance at the just 2022 UN General Assembly (UNGA77) in New York, the Ghana President, Nana Akufo Addo, urged investors to support Africa’s lucrative agro-industry.
He told the world leaders that Africa is ready for business in new frontier such as manufacturing, technology and food processing and production.
Local manufacturing will ensure that African economies benefit from reduced dependence on imported products from countries like China, Japan and European nations with positive implications for the market value of their local currencies.
There is also the need for increased investment in the oil and gas to guarantee that the sector benefitted the peoples of Africa.
Zamfara is one of the states in Nigeria where numerous mineral resources in commercial quantity have remained largely under-utilised, leading to very low industrialisation.
At a recent investment stakeholders’ meeting organised by the Indian Government Abuja the state’s Deputy Governor, Alhaji Hassan Nasiha urged the Federal Government to connect the state with foreign investors for optimum utilisation of its numerous mineral resources.
Nasiha, who made the appeal through his Director-General of Press Affairs, Babangida Zurmi, said the state has huge deposits of gold, iron ore, tantalite, zinc, copper and gypsum, among other numerous solid minerals.
He said that both its metallic and non-metallic resources were untapped in almost all the 14 local government areas of the state.
Nasiha said it was the desire of the state government to ensure that these mineral deposits had positive impact on the lives of the people of the state.
Similarly, at a colloquium marking Nigeria’s 62nd Independence, the keynote speaker, Mrs Ibironke Adeagbo, a Chartered Accountant and Chief Executive Officer of a UK-based charity, IA-Foundation said investment in education was key to unraveling Nigeria’s industrialisation puzzle.
She argued that Nigeria has not adequately funded an education system capable of producing young entrepreneurs with the know-how to maximize the nation’s resources for industrial growth.
But all is not gloom as some states have taken initiatives towards creating the enabling environment for industrialisation to blossom.
One of such states is Gombe which said recently that it is planning to organise an investment summit to attract investors to tap into business opportunities in the state.
In Katsina State, the state government is preparing to host a groundbreaking Economic Summit for its two mega Economic Zone Projects.
The move the government said is intended to project the potentials of the state in textile and other agricultural produce that the state is endowed with.
**If used please credit the writer and News Agency of Nigeria。
Dr Patrick Dakum, Labour Party (LP)’s governorship candidate for Plateau has promised to leverage agriculture, tourism and mining to improve the state’s economy if elected in 2023Dakum, who spoke to newsmen on the sidelines of the party’s presidential campaign flag off on Saturday in Lafia, said that Plateau needed focused, experienced and prudent leadership to turn its fortune around.
The governorship candidate said that himself and his deputy, Edward Pwajok SAN, were bringing their integrity, exposure and wealth of experience in governance to bear if given the mandate by the people.
According to Dakum, Plateau is currently ranked 32 in the country in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
He, however, promised that his adminstration would work to make Plateau rank among the top 15 within four years by developing agriculture, tourism and the mining sectors.
Dakum said that he would give priority attention to the enablers of the economic drivers — good governance, security and human capital development in order to move the state to greater height.
He assured that women would be properly represented at the policy level in his administration so as to articulate issues germane to women.
“As a public health physician, I would ensure that the issue of maternal health is taken to the Primary Health Care level in an effective way in order to reduce the high rate of maternal mortality, ” he said.
Dakum, who noted the entrepreneurship and hardworking spirit of Plateau women said they constituted about 75 per cent of workers in farms and mining fields in parts of the state.
He said they would be provided with farming inputs and other incentives to ease their work and to boost the economy of their families, and by extension, the state.
He said his government would also provide mining equipments for the women and work towards legalising their vocation.
“N1,000 in the hands of a woman will go farther than N10,000 in the hands of a man.
So, economic development of women is the economic development of the home,” he said.
On the party’s chances of winning the 2023 general elections, Dakum said that Nigerians had clearly demonstrated their yearning for change from the old order.
He said that Labour Party was the way to achieving a new Nigeria given the quality of leadership and sincerity of purpose Mr Peter Obi and Yusuf Datti would be offering.
The governorship candidate said that what they had set out to do in Plateau would be a microcosm of what would happen at the federal level if given the mandate in 2023.He, therefore, urged Nigerians to vote massively for the Labour Party in 2023 for a secure, prosperous and egalitarian nation.
The Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning said the ministry was not consulted on the new monetary policy announced by the CBN to redesign N200, N500 and N1000 naira notes with effect from Dec 15. Minister of Finance, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, said this in Abuja on Friday, while responding to questions from Sen. Bamidele Opeyemi (APC-Ekiti) on the impact of the policy at the budget defence session with Senate Committee on Finance.
Opeyemi had decried the spontaneous increase in price of dollar to naira at the parallel market since the policy was announced by the CBN.
He expressed concern on the likely consequences of the policy on the nation’s economy, given the astronomical increase of forex.
Collaborating, Chairman of the Committee, Sen. Solomon Adeola (APC-Lagos), said with the announcement of the policy, dollar had started going up.
He said the consequences of the policy were that price of dollar to the naira was rising, adding that it might rise to N1,000 before December, when the policy would take off.
The minister said she received information on the new policy just as other Nigerians, saying that her ministry, as a fiscal authority, was not part of the process leading to formulation and announcement of the policy.
“We were not consulted, it was an announcement that we heard, it was said that part of the reason advocated was that it was one of the ways to mope up liquidity to manage inflation.
“But there are consequences that we are also looking at, what will the consequences be, there will be some benefits, but there will be some challenges.
“And I don’t know whether the monetary authorities have actually looked very closely as to where the consequences are and how they can be mitigated.
“So I still advise that you have that discussion with the monetary authorities,” she said.
She said it was her opinion, as a Nigerian, not as a fiscal authority, reiterating that as finance ministry and fiscal authority, they were unaware of the policy.
On debt profile of the nation, she said the size of the nation’s debt profile which stood at 23 per cent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), was a healthy debt.
She revealed that the debt services were sustainable, adding that what the nation needed was to increase its revenue generation profile.
She said the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) collections stood at 83 per cent performance of the 2022 budget as at August.
She said with the activation of the excise duties on carbonated drinks and eventual commencement of the use of heavy duty scanners by customs at the ports, revenue profile would increase towards the end of the year.
Financial analysts at Afrivest West Africa have suggested that only concerted fiscal and monetary policy would resolve the challenge of high inflation in the country.
The analysists also said that the policy should include efforts targeted at resolving insecurity challenges, optimising exchange rate management, fixing structural loopholes, and curbing reckless fiscal spending.
They said this in the company’s 2022 Banking Sector Report Nigeria on Thursday in Lagos that the policy should include efforts targeted at fixing structural loopholes and curbing reckless fiscal spending.
Others include resolving insecurity challenges and optimising exchange rate management.
It however, acknowledged that the CBN had taken the lead in the efforts at curtailing the runaway inflation rate as seen in the back-to-back hike of the Monetary Policy Rate in May, July, and September to 15.5 per cent.
On the fiscal policy front, it said the divergence between the share of FG’s recurrent and capital expenditure component had widened significantly in the last decade.
On the economy, the report said that in 2021, the Nigerian economy recovered markedly from the pandemic-induced strain of the prior year.
“Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew 3.4 per cent from 1.9 per cent in 2020, beating our projection by 0.4 basis point.
“The recovery was mainly driven by the expansion of activities in the non-oil sector up 4.4 per cent, while the oil sector remained in a recession.
“This growth momentum was sustained into 2022 albeit with a wider divergence between the oil and non-oil sectors,” it said.
The report stated that, given the resilient half-year 2022 performance and expectation of sustained positive performance by key non-oil activity sectors in third and fourth quarters of the year, it reviewed the 2022 baseline growth forecast upward by 40 basis points to 3.3 per cent.
However, it maintained that growth momentum in the medium term would remain short of the level that can meaningfully lift the average well-being of the citizenry due to persistent domestic and external headwinds.
It said oil price level, domestic inflation rate has remained persistently high, averaging 14.3 per cent in the last six years.
In first half of 2022, headline inflation averaged 16.7 per cent owing to the impact of the Russia- Ukraine war on input prices, continued forex illiquidity, and structural challenges.
Based on the World Bank estimate, the stinging fang of the elevated price level would drag five million more Nigerians into extreme poverty (to reach 95.1m) by 2022 year-end In his comments, the Group Managing Director, Afrinvest West Africa, Ike Chioke, said Nigerians should prepare for reforms that would turn the economy around.
He said that looking ahead, Nigeria was set for another cycle of leadership in 2023 as the tenure of President Muhammadu Buhari, 30 state governors, and over 1,000 legislatures draw to a close.
“At a time when there is daunting fiscal, monetary, and social challenges to surmount, Nigerians cannot afford to elect leaders who lack the competence, capacity, and creativity to find lasting solutions to the national quagmire.
“Even with a leadership that is willing to introduce the needed reforms, the present challenging environment would worsen before it can get better,” Chioke said.
According to him, Nigerians will need to brace for impact, regardless of who the President is.
“Noteworthy, the political-will of the incoming administration to implement tough reforms would curtail major economic leakages.
“These leakages include the subsidy regime on PMS which has gulped over N7 trillion since 2010 and ensure the proper channelling of scarce resources to critical sectors would be a refreshing start,” he added.
Speaker of Lagos House of Assembly, Mr Mudashiru Obasa, has urged Nigerians to vote for the APC presidential candidate, Sen. Bola Tinubu, saying he can make Nigeria great again.
Obasa stated this during the presentation of the 2023 budget estimate of N1,692 trillion from Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu to the assembly in Lagos on Thursday.
He described Lagos as a ‘Star State,’ adding that it had enjoyed consistency in governance, beginning from administration’s Tinubu as governor.
Obasa said, “I also want to appeal to members of our great party in Lagos and Nigerians at home and in the Diaspora to keep the tempo high by engaging Nigerians with Sen. Bola Tinubu’s plans for a better country.
“Nigeria will be great again, and our collective hope should be on the APC presidential candidate who understands what Nigeria needs at this time.
“To all our party leaders, particularly the GAC members, we must continue in our determination and focus to keep Lagos strong and healthy enough for us.
“I am confident that we will continue to win in every situation and in the coming election,” he said.
Obasa noted that Tinubu was an easy sell, as his footprints remained indelible in Lagos.
“Today, Lagos still enjoys an internally-generated revenue of N51 billion monthly from the paltry N600 million it was making in 1999,” he said.
The speaker said this was the result of the various economic policies initiated by Tinubu while he was the governor.
He also noted that Tinubu’s education and health policies were the best of the period and still being referenced till date.
Obasa also urged the Federal Government to approve the allocation of one per cent special status for Lagos.
According to him, each day, the state experiences an influx of people who come with the hope of having the opportunity to eke out a living.
He said that the state had sustained this attraction because it continued to enjoy good leadership.
The speaker maintained that the state accounted for about 20 per cent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and about 10 per cent of its population.
Obasa said this was not, however, to gloss over the impact of such massive movement of people to the state.
He said that this was evident in the state’s infrastructures that were consistently overstretched, thus requiring constant attention.
This, the speaker said, was why they would continue to agitate for the allocation of one per cent special status for the state.
Mr Jim Ovia, Chairman, Zenith Group on Wednesday said the current Nigeria economy was adversely impacting on the insurance industry.
Ovia, represented by Mr Kehinde Borisade, Managing Executive Officer, Zenith General Insurance Company Ltd. said this while delivering a paper titled, “Improving Insurance Penetration in Nigeria”.
The paper was delivered at the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB) 60th Anniversary Grand Ball and Night of Honours in Lagos, sponsored by Zenith Insurance.
He explained that the country was facing serious economic challenges with an estimated 2023 budget deficit of around five per cent of an estimated Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $514 billion as at September.
According to him, the country’s inflation rate of 20.8 per cent was significantly higher than its top African peers.
Ovia noted that following the trend, the insurance industry had to cope with increased costs, inflation in claims payment and failure to realise profit.
He expressed displeasure that the insurance industry accounts for only N2.27 billion out of the $514 billion GDP the country generates.
The chairman stated that Nigeria has the lowest insurance penetration rate of 0.3 per cent, among other Aftican countries with GDP sizes of over $100 billion.
“This compares poorly to the rate of around 40 to 54 per cent in the Europe and USA,” he said.
According to him, among reasons for the low insurance penetration in Nigeria and Africa was financial illiteracy and affordability for low income earners.
He identified others factors to include cumbersome processes, due to inadequate robust and sophisticated technology, gaps in the industry value chain and distrust of insurance companies.
To improve insurance penetration, Ovia suggested that the industry should adopt the ‘SUAVE principle.
The SUAVE principle means making insurance products, claims and policy wordings Simple, Understood, Accessible, Value adding and Efficient for all stakeholders.
He also advised brokers not to capitalise on their monopolistic power in controlling the insurance market.
He said over 500 registered insurance brokers collectively control the insurance market with around 52 per cent contribution to the Gross Premium Income (GPI), while brokers market in the Europe accounts for 20 to 40 per cent of its gross premium.
“Nigeria brokers tend to earn higher commission than its attainable in other African countries.
“Many brokers capitalise on this monopolistic power which has led to inadequacy of rates and premiums for demanded cover.
“Others are inappropriate policy terms and conditions, failure to or delay in providing documentation and information and coersion to make ex-gratia payment,” he said.
Jim assured that Zenith General Insurance would continue to remain financially sound with a total asset of N50 billion and shareholders funds of N32 billion.
In his address, Mr Rotimi Edu, President, NCRIB, appreciated Zenith Insurance and other co-sponsors as; Tangerine Life, AXA Mansard and Cornerstone Insurance Plc for their support toward the success of the event.
Edu also thank all other companies that found it expedient to sponsor all the council’s 60th anniversary programme.
He charged operators in the industry to adopt adequate robust technology to drive the industry, since technology plays a pivotal role in different aspects of modern day society and business processes.
The NCRIB’s president sympathised with victims of the on-going flooding across the country and those who have lost lives and properties.
The lead broker implored government to convoke stakeholders’ engagement on the malaise and factor in insurance into management of disasters in the country, adding that the council was opened for such opportunity.
He said this would free government funds, often expended on palliatives, for other pressing public good.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Mr Darlington Nwokocha, Chairman, National Assembly House Committee on Insurance and Actuarial Matters andDr Rabiu Olowo, Lagos State Commissioner for Finance, among others were recipients of various awards presented by the council.
PA ) Estonia has called on Britain’s new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to commit to raising defence spending.
Mr Sunak has not matched a pledge by his predecessor Liz Truss to boost defence spending from 2 per cent to 3 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2030, having previously described such targets as “arbitary”.
When asked in a BBC interview if NATO countries should aim to spend 3 per cent of GDP on defence, Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu said: “Absolutely.
” He also said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was a “game-changer”.
“Autocrats are investing in weapons,” he added.
“They believe in (the) power of arms.
” “To defend our values – the rules-based order – we need also to invest in the weapons,” he said.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, who survived Sunak’s reshuffle in the same role, would be on resignation watch if the government backtracks on the defence spending commitment.
Reinsalu also asked the UK not to cut troop numbers in Estonia, saying “we love UK soldiers” and “we want more”.
It came after the government was criticised by opposition parties earlier this month for appearing to be “shamelessly walking away” from Estonia, amid reports almost 700 British troops deployed to the country were being withdrawn without any planned replacements.
“Are we successors of Chamberlain or Churchill?
” Mr Reinsalu asked the BBC, referring to the late prime ministers.
Sunak on Tuesday evening held his first call with Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelensky, pledging the UK’s “steadfast support” for his country, a Downing Street spokesperson said.
The spokesperson added: “The Prime Minister said the United Kingdom’s support for Ukraine would be as strong as ever under his premiership, and President Zelensky could count on his Government to stand in continued solidarity.
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