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Economy

#EndSARS: Freight Forwarders Reject Demurrage From Shipping Companies

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nigerian Freight Forwarders

By Adedapo Adesanya

The National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) has rejected demurrage imposed by shipping companies and terminal operators during the disruption to their businesses during the #EndSARS protests across the country.

Demurrage refers to charges that the freight forwarders or charterers pay to the shipowners for delayed operations of loading/unloading.

Speaking on this, the 100 per cent Compliance Team of the association, through its National Coordinator, Mr Ibrahim Tanko, in Lagos said, “it has come to our knowledge that some shipping companies and terminal operators have already started charging storage and demurrage for the period of EndSARS protest.”

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He noted that this was without recourse to other consideration for the security of lives and properties.

“Following the #ENDSARS Nigerian youths protest which lasted for more than a week now, the NAGAFF 100 per cent Compliance Team wishes to appeal to shipping companies and terminal operators in Lagos not to impose demurrage/rent.

“First consideration world over in any crisis period is the security of lives and properties and it is most unfortunate to note that, otherwise is the case here.

“We want to say a big No to that effect,” he said in a statement.

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Mr Tanko said that they had expected shipping companies and terminal operators to show some concern, love, solidarity and pity for Nigerian youths and those importers who lost their beloved ones in the struggle for good governance.

Mr Tanko noted that NAGAFF 100 per cent Compliance Team would not fold its hands and watch its members being extorted for no fault of theirs.

He said that the team would resist such demurrage by shipping companies and terminal operators.

“We will mobilise in most civil manner other associations, truck owners, clearing agents and port users in a card-carrying protest against shipping companies and terminal operators to block their gates and entrances until our demands are met.

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“We, therefore, call on the shipping companies and terminal operators to refund with immediate effect the demurrage to those who have already paid.

“We will escalate this matter after 24 hours of this notice if they (shipping companies and terminal operators) fail to heed to our prayers.

“However, we will not forget the good working relationship we have with you to crave for your anticipated understanding,” Mr Tanko said.

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

Binance Woos African Blockchain Developers with $30,000

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Binance

By Adedapo Adesanya

The world’s leading blockchain ecosystem and cryptocurrency infrastructure provider, Binance, is currently holding a Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and Non-fungible token (NFT) hackathon for African blockchain enthusiasts.

The 20-day hackathon, co-hosted by Bundle, a social payments app for crypto, is empowering blockchain engineers to rapidly build blockchain solutions on the Binance Smart Chain in order to solve real problems identified in the African systems in place today.

The hackathon commenced on June 6 and is set to end on June 28, 2021. However, interested participants can still join the hackathon and stand a chance to build the next generation of decentralized applications on the Binance Smart Chain and compete for the prize pool of over $30,000.

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Participants will be rated by the community and an esteemed panel of judges based on the quality of technology, innovation, demo and pitch. Judges will consist of team leaders from the hackathon sponsors i.e. Bundle, Mobox, Refinable, Quidax, ForTube, 1inch, among others.

The hackathon is open to all developers from Africa (the hackathon is open to both beginners and non-beginners)

How to participate in the hackathon:

  1. Sign up through the Hackerlink special landing page and click on ‘Apply grant’.
  2. Select “Binance Africa Hackathon- Grant Round 1” from the drop-down list.
  3. Please ensure your wallet account (MetaMask or WalletConnect) is connected to HackerLink, your network is on BSC Mainnet and you have some BNB (0.005 at least) for gas fee.
  4. Use an existing BUIDL (project) or create a new BUIDL to apply for the grant.
  5. Click “Confirm” on your wallet to authorize the transaction of the gas fee to complete your application to the grant.
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The BUIDL (project) will appear on the “Grant BUIDLs” page once it has been verified by Hackerlink.

What to expect: All DeFi and NFT projects will be built on the Binance Smart Chain and made completely open source. Participants will build cool solutions that will potentially solve some of the real problems facing Africa.

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Some examples of areas to cover include: Savings, Lending and Borrowing, Swaps, Royalties and Renting, Elections, Identity Management, Land Ownership, NFTs marketplaces amongst other relevant areas.

Binance is the world’s leading blockchain ecosystem and cryptocurrency infrastructure provider with a financial product suite that includes the largest digital asset exchange by volume.

Trusted by millions worldwide, the Binance platform is dedicated to increasing the freedom of money for users and features an unmatched portfolio of crypto products and offerings, including trading and finance, education, data and research, social good, investment and incubation, decentralization and infrastructure solutions, and more.

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Economy

NGX Upgrades BOC Gases Shares to Medium-Priced Stock Group

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BOC Gases

By Dipo Olowookere

Shares of BOC Gases have been upgraded and placed on the medium-priced stock level from the previous low-priced stock category.

The reclassification became necessary after its equity value has traded at the current group for a period of four of its most recent six months.

The Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited puts stocks on its trading platform into three groups; high-priced, medium-priced, and low-priced levels and this is purely based on their market price.

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In this regard, securities must have traded for at least four out of the most recent six-month period within a stock price level’s specified price band to be classified into the category.

In a notice on Wednesday, the exchange said a review of BOC Gases’ stock price and trade activities over the most recent six-month period provides the basis for reclassifying the security from the low-priced stock group to the medium-priced stock group.

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“This reclassification also necessitates the attendant change in the tick size change from one kobo to 5 kobo, in line with Rule 15.29: Pricing Methodology, Rulebook of the Exchange, 2015,” the notice sighted by Business Post explained.

It was further explained that BOC Gases stock price appreciated above the N5 price level on November 16, 2020, and traded above N5 up till the close of business on March 17, 2021.

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“This indicates that BOC Gases Plc stock price has traded above N5 in at least 4 months out of the last 6 months.

“Resultantly, BOC Gases Plc has been reclassified from the low-priced stock group to the medium-priced stock group with effect from today, [Wednesday], June 16, 2021,” the disclosure added.

Shares of BOC Gases closed flat today at the stock exchange at N10.55 per unit.

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Economy

SEC Okays NG Clearing as Central Counterparty

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NG Clearing Central Counterparty

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

NG Clearing Limited, a company incorporated on May 24, 2016, to facilitate derivatives trading in the Nigerian capital market, has been given the licence to operate as a central counterparty (CCP).

The authorisation was given by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the apex regulatory agency in the Nigerian capital market and this licence became effective Monday, June 7, 2021.

With the registration to perform the function of a CCP, NG Clearing becomes the first organisation to carry out this duty in the country. It means the firm has the authority to clear and settle exchange-traded derivative products.

The Chairman of NG Clearing, Mr Oscar Onyema, expressed delight over this development, noting that it will improve the soundness and safety of the Nigerian financial market.

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He said the company will deliver best-in-class post-trade services that manage counterparty credit risk and reduce systemic risk by interposing itself as a guarantor to both parties in a transaction, thus ensuring the successful execution of derivatives and other trades from various trade points in Nigeria.

“NG Clearing will deliver an unparalleled CCP experience for the Nigerian financial and capital markets and will optimise the deployment of its resources to achieve long-term value creation for its stakeholders using a state-of-the-art risk management framework, which complies with global best practices for mitigating settlement risk,” he said.

On his part, the Managing Director of NG Clearing, Mr Tapas Das said the company has sufficient financial resources, including a settlement guarantee fund to cover participants’ risk exposures.

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He noted that members will have access to a wide range of financial reports that equip them with extensive knowledge and enable them to make informed decisions, as well as access to NG Clearing’s bespoke clearing and settlement software application which will support the clearing and settlement of derivative instruments across various asset classes i.e., futures and options contracts on indices, equity shares, commodities, currency, rates etc.

“NG Clearing shall be playing a key role in the financial market ecosystem in the region, upholding stability and safety of the marketplace, through an efficient and timely settlement of derivative trades.

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“The aim is to strengthen the country’s investment environment through solutions that systematically reduce risks, enhance operating efficiency, and minimize costs for all market participants, thereby serving as a catalyst to national development,” he stated.

NG Clearing is promoted by the Nigerian Exchange Group Plc and Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) Plc along with key stakeholders, including Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), Access Bank Plc, Consonance Kuramo Special Opportunities Fund I, Coronation Merchant Bank Limited, Greenwich Merchant Bank Limited, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) and Association of Securities Dealing Houses of Nigeria (ASHON).

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