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CAC Exceeds 2020 Revenue Target by 4.4%

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CAC

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has disclosed that it exceeded its revenue target for 2020 by 4.4 per cent as it raked in N19 billion as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in the period under review.

This was disclosed by the CAC Registrar-General, Mr Garba Abubakar, on Wednesday.

According to him, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic that affected economic activities, the commission recorded an increase in the registration of businesses and other corporate entities during the year.

“The year 2020 was one of our best years in terms of revenue generation as we recorded a surge in registration above the previous year.

“We had a revenue target of N18.2 billion, but we closed here with over N19 billion.

“For the first time in the last 10 years, we are able to give more money to the federal government in terms of operating surplus.

“We are hoping that we will meet our target for 2021 because where there is increased compliance by customers, there will be an increase in the revenue for the government.

“Transactions are now easily carried out with the electronic system, as you pay through the remittal on our portal, without paper works,” he said.

He expressed hopes that the agency would surpass the N20 billion revenue target this year by leveraging on electronic systems transactions for most of its operations.

Mr Abubakar, who was appointed to head CAC on January 7, 2020, by President Muhammadu Buhari, said the commission has undergone some reforms in the past year.

According to him, the organisation has successfully embedded the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Tax Identification Number (TIN) on the certificate of registration for companies through the existing FIRS stamp duty portal.

He said that the agency has commenced the implementation of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 (CAMA 2020) with the introduction of a new self-service portal that allowed for end-to-end electronic submission by customers.

He said that the new CAMA provided a robust framework towards reforming identified legal, regulatory and administrative bottlenecks, which had hitherto slowed down the wheel of doing business for over three decades.

The Registrar-General, however, noted that inherited financial liabilities and the COVID-19 pandemic were some of the challenges he faced in steering the affairs of the organization in the past year.

“The challenges we had last year was the inherited liabilities, as I took over with over N6 billion liabilities, and also had challenges of service delivery because of the COVID-19 restrictions.

“Before the COVID-19 pandemic, we were registering company and business names within 24 hours, but the pandemic and the various restrictions to curb the spread of the disease affected our service delivery,” he said.

Mr Abubakar said that part of the commission’s agenda for 2021 was to build stronger collaborations with relevant agencies and intensify the enforcement of the provisions of the new CAMA.

He tasked all registered entities on compliance with the new law in terms of filing their annual returns and other statutory duties to the commission.

According to him, with the new law, it is now easier for companies to file their returns without going through any lawyer, accountant or chartered secretary.

“With the new portal, a company can decide to have its own electronic account that will allow it to make all its fillings directly.

“The new portal also shows at a glance the status of a company, whether it is active, dormant, receivership or liquidation.

“We have given access to most government agencies and foreign missions in Nigeria to confirm the status of companies and we will continue to do that.

“Before they deal with any registered company, they will verify if such company is actually an active company and whether the information provided by such company is consistent with the CAC records,” he said.

Mr Abubakar further said the commission was working out modalities for granting amnesty on annual returns to companies and other registered entities and it would be announced before the end of the first quarter of this year.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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Economy

Weekly Forex Turnover at I&E Skyrockets to $1.1bn

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Weekly Forex Turnover

By Sodeinde Temidayo David

In one week, the total value of transactions recorded at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) window of the foreign exchange (forex) market in Nigeria rose to $1.1 billion.

Data obtained by Business Post from the FMDQ Securities Exchange showed that the weekly forex turnover at the I&E was 18.73 per cent or $183.56 million higher than the $980.1 million recorded a week earlier.

The FMDQ exchange, which tracks trades on the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Rate Fixing (NAFEX) platform, revealed that the significant spike in the value of the transactions was due to the high FX demand last Friday, a day after the Naira depreciated against the United States Dollar to an all-time low of N422.07/$1, triggering panic at the FX window.

At the first trading session of last week, the turnover was $184.3 million and the next day, it dropped to $153.4 million before skyrocketing to $306.8 million on Wednesday and the next day, the turnover went down to $141.9 million before jumping to $337.3 million due to decision of investors to quickly pull out their funds as a result of comments by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo interpreted to mean he was in full support of the devaluation of the local currency so as to allow it get its true market value.

As for the performance of the Naira against the US dollar at the investors’ window in the week, it depreciated by 0.2 per cent or 77 kobo week-on-week to N415.07/$1 from N414.30/$1 in the preceding week.

The weakening of the local currency at the FX market window must have been caused by the rise in the demand for forex experienced at the mid-week and the last trading session as well as the shortage supply of forex to traders to meet the demands of their customers.

It was gathered that last Monday, the domestic currency traded at N414.40/$1 at the I&E segment and appreciated to N414.30/$1 on Tuesday.

At the midweek session, it fell to N415.10/$1 and the next day, it dropped to an all-time low of N422.07/$1 before bouncing back to close at N415.07/$1 last Friday.

Also at the interbank segment of the market, the Nigerian currency lost 0.02 per cent or 10 kobo week-on-week against the American Dollar to trade at N410.91/$1 versus the previous week’s N410.81/$1.

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Economy

CBN Adds New Feature to Yet-to-be-Launched eNaira

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eNaira

By Sodeinde Temidayo David

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced that the yet-to-be-launched eNaira will have a new add-on that will enable users to complete transactions with mobile phones without Internet capability.

The apex bank, in a document titled Design paper for the eNaira, disclosed that maximising the value and use cases of the nation’s digital currency would depend largely on devices with Internet capabilities.

A few months ago, the CBN said it would launch eNaira on October 1, 2021, but it later suspended this without giving a new date for the unveiling.

This digital currency, which is expected to promote the cashless policy, is expected to become operational after the central bank stopped the trading of unregulated digital currencies in the country like Bitcoin, Ethereum and others.

The eNaira is to be introduced into the country under the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), an electronic record or digital token of the local currency and is to be issued and regulated by the monetary authority.

Given the reason, the CBN noted that, “The eNaira thus risks further alienating sections of the population who are uneducated, lack exposure and access to internet services or digital devices.”

The apex bank is adding the new feature to the eNaira following a recent publication that estimated that 35 per cent or about 37.1 million of the nation’s adult population was illiterate.

To face the risk of losing adoption of the digital currency to this segment of the population, the CBN added that the bank has factored in the need for inclusiveness as part of the core design principle of the eNaira.

According to the central bank, this principle has enabled the bank to focus on simplicity and ease on the use of the e-Naira, to ensure that Nigerians without Internet-enabled phones can access the digital service.

The CBN said the eNaira would complement existing payment options available via the mobile banking apps, Point of Sale (POS) terminals, Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD), quick response code and Internet banking, among other channels.

GSMA, a global industry organisation that represents the interests of mobile network operators, had said in a recent report that 19 per cent of people living in Nigeria do not have access to mobile broadband coverage.

In its design paper, the central bank, in a bid to ensure inclusive access while also ensuring the integrity of the financial system, has chosen the account-based CBDC model for the eNaira.

The CBN said, “The account-based CBDC model at its core mirrors the progress made on the National Financial Inclusion Strategy which enables access to financial services by leveraging last-mile networks to identify users and to provide banking services through channels such as PoS and USSD.

“With the account-based model, the CBN seeks to enable access by leveraging the existing identity infrastructure in Nigeria such as the BVN, NIN, TIN, etc., to uniquely identify individuals and corporate entities.

“Specifically, identity frameworks such as the NIN will enable access for the financially excluded as they can be uniquely identified, thereby enabling the provision of financial services. These identity systems will help ensure a robust KYC framework positioned to enable access for all Nigerians.”

The CBN also added that this would help improve cross-border payments and address issues of dollarisation of the economy, as it could be recalled that Visa, a payments company, recently noted that the ease of operating CBDCs would determine the success of digital currencies.

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Economy

Nigerian Exporters Fail Due to Poor Training, Exposure—NEPC

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Nigerian exporters

By Ashemiriogwa Emmanuel

The Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) has revealed that many Nigerian exporters, including women entrepreneurs, fail in the international market as a result of poor training and exposure to the business.

According to the federal agency, it is necessary for anyone who wants to venture and succeed in the business to undergo adequate training in order to grasp the scope of the competitive venture.

The Executive Director/CEO of the NEPC, Mr Olusegun Awolowo, disclosed this at a capacity building workshop organized for women-owned businesses in the non-oil export value chain in Akure, Ondo State on Friday, October 15

Speaking at the event, which was organised by the Export Development and Incentive Department of the NEPC, Mr Awolowo said that, “Lack of export market training is one of the major reasons Nigerian exporters fail in the international market.

“Exporters need to learn the specific requirements of the target markets as well as the certification needed for the product to be exported.”

Represented by the Head/Trade Promotion Advisor at NEPC Akure, Mr Macpherson Fred-Ileogben, the agency’s head noted that it was for this reason that the council decided to organise the workshop.

The training featured coaching and networking sessions to give women entrepreneurs the opportunity to improve their knowledge of competitiveness in the export market.

He cited that the involvement of women in trade will not only promote gender equality but also increase the growth potential of the nation.

As a result of the gradual recovery from the global pandemic, players in the non-oil exporting business into the international market have been tasked to think outside the box to ensure continuity.

To realize this, it would be recalled that the agency also organized a sensitisation workshop in Lagos in September 2021 which was themed Earn Dollars by Selling on Amazon to help stakeholders see the opportunities in leveraging e-commerce.

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