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Economy

NAFDAC Partners GATF for Better Global Trade Transactions

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NAFDAC

By Adedapo Adesanya

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has commenced a partnership with the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation (GATF) to put together strategies for export and import trade in Nigeria.

This was disclosed by the drug and food regulatory body through its resident media consultant, Mr Olusayo Akintola, stating that the procedures were to ensure ease of doing business in Nigeria.

The statement noted that the partnership was also aimed at achieving standardisation, harmonisation of documents and simplified trade formalities for importers and exporters.

It said that NAFDAC Director-General, Mrs Mojisola Adeyeye, reached the agreement at a virtual meeting with GATF Nigeria top officials led by its Project Lead, Mr Bernard Traynor.

The statement added that the partnership project is being powered by GATF, an organisation hosted by the Centre for International Private Enterprise, International Chambers of Commerce, and the World Economic Forum.

“The project in Nigeria is being implemented by the German Technical Cooperation popularly known as GIZ. The alliance is supported by the governments of the US, Canada, Germany, Denmark and the government of Australia through their respective agencies,” the agency noted.

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The statement quoted Mrs Adeyeye, who was represented at the meeting by Dr Abimbola Adegboye, Head of Trade and International Relations at the agency, as listing measures that NAFDAC had already put in place for both import and export trade.

Mrs Adeyeye reiterated that NAFDAC had already put in place measures to ensure that there is a seamless and more robust operational procedure with both export and import at the borders.

She said part of the measures was to achieve cooperation among government agencies at the borders, adding that NAFDAC’s focus now was to ensure smooth trade facilitation and regulation.

According to her, operations of regulators should not pose a hindrance to trade transactions but facilitate them.

She said that the agency was making sure that there are not so many interferences between the users of the agency facilities and the agency.

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“So, we try as much as possible to remove both human interferences under the guise of consultants, because more or less they do not facilitate trade, they tend to distort it.

“Trade should be on basis of safety and quality, that is the only way trade could be sustained; If quality is not put into your product, It gives the country a bad name, they blacklist the company involved.

“The consumers are the losers because they do not have value for money and their health is compromised,” she stressed.

She stated that these are the issues that the global alliance would be addressing, adding that what would make all these visible and possible was to ensure that operations at the borders are seamless.

According to her, if a producer has perishable items that are to be exported or that are to be allowed into the country and they are delayed unnecessarily or held based on premium conditions, such products could go bad, and the integrity of such product would be compromised.

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She said that anything that would make trade operations very easy both for inflow and outflow, and would make the whole process of regulation friendly and not cumbersome for importers and exporters, is what the agency aimed for.

The statement also quoted the Project Manager of GATF, Nigeria, Mr David Okeku, explaining that being an alliance, his organisation had critical private sector partners, and series of projects currently being implemented in Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Zambia, Senegal, Uganda and Latin America, Asia and Middle East countries.

“How we work in the alliance is that we partner with multinationals, local businesses because we believe strongly that they will bring in their expertise and also best practices; and also bring in supply-chain companies.

“We use them as our ambassadors globally and in-country. Local businesses also contribute in form of expertise and resources in kind towards the alliance,” the statement added.

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

NGX Lists 29.4 billion GT HoldCo Shares at N28.55 Each

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GT HoldCo Shares

By Dipo Olowookere

The Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited has finally listed 29,431,179,224 ordinary shares of Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GT HoldCo) Plc on its trading platform.

The stocks were admitted on the exchange on Thursday, June 24, 2021, after the delisting of the entire GTBank equities on the same platform.

Business Post reports that the shares were listed today at a unit price of N28.55.

Last Friday, the stock exchange placed trading in the equities of GTBank on full suspension ahead of their delisting to allow the introduction of GT HoldCo shares.

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Today, the GTBank shares were removed from the exchange, a total of 29,431,179,224 and were replaced with 29,431,179,224 units of GT HoldCo.

Confirming this development, the NGX in a circular said, “We refer to our market bulletin with reference number NGX REG/LRD/MB16/21/06/18 dated June 18, 2021, wherein the market was notified that trading in the shares of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc (GTB) was placed on full suspension effective Friday, June 18, 2021, in preparation for the delisting of GTB and listing of the Holding Company, Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc (GT HoldCo).

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“The market is hereby notified that the entire 29,431,179,224 issued shares of GTB were delisted from the daily official list of the NGX today, June 24, 2021, while GT Holdco’s entire issued share capital of 29,431,179,224 ordinary shares of 50 kobo each were also today, June 24, 2021, listed on the daily official list of NGX at N28.55 per share.

“The delisting of GTB and listing of GT HoldCo on NGX is pursuant to the Scheme of Arrangement between Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and the holders of its fully paid ordinary shares of 50 kobo each as approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and sanctioned by the court.”

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GTBank restructured its business to allow it to offer more services and improve the earnings and value of the company. This led to the change to a financial HoldCo, with GTBank becoming a private company and will operate as a banking institution.

Other subsidiaries were created to offer services in financial technology (fintech), insurance, asset management and other sectors.

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Economy

June 2021 Allocation to FG, States, LGs Drops to N605.96bn

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June 2021 allocation

By Adedapo Adesanya

The federal government, the 36 states of the federation and the 774 local government areas shared the sum of N605.96 billion from the revenue generated in May 2021.

This was disclosed by the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) in a communique released on Thursday after its meeting held via virtual conferencing.

Business Post reports that the amount shared by the three tiers of government for the June 2021 allocation was lower than the N616.9 billion disbursed last month.

Giving a breakdown of the disbursement, the committee explained that from the inclusive cost of collection to Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), the federal government received N242.1 billion, the states received N194.2 billion, while the local government councils got N143.7 billion.

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The nine oil-producing states of Delta, Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Rivers, Edo, Ondo, Imo, Abia and Lagos all received N26.9 billion as a 13 per cent derivation of mineral revenue.

The communique issued by the FAAC at the end of the meeting indicated that the gross revenue available from the Value Added Tax (VAT) for May 2021 was N181.1 billion as against N176.7 billion achieved in the preceding month of April 2021. This resulted in an increase of N4.368 billion.

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The distribution is as follows; federal government got N25.3 billion, the states received N84.2 billion and local government councils received N58.9 billion.

The distributed statutory revenue of N428.198 billion received for the month was lower than the N497.385 billion received for the previous month by N69.197 billion, from which the federal government received N175.5 billion, states got N89.0 billion, while the LGs got N69.6 billion, and the 13 per cent mineral derivation handed to the nine oil states amounted to N24.666 billion.

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The communique also revealed that Companies Income Tax (CIT), and Oil and Gas Royalties, Import and Excise Duty decreased in the month, meaning only VAT increased in the month under review, although marginally.

The communique, however, disclosed that total revenue distributable for the current month inclusive of gross statutory revenue of N357.9 billion, VAT of N168.4 billion, solid mineral revenue of N7.9 billion, exchange gain of N1.7 billion and augmentation from oil and non-oil revenue of N50 billion and N20 billion respectively brought the total distributable revenue to N605.958 billion.

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Economy

National LPG Takes Sensitization to 12 States

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Domestic LPG

By Adedapo Adesanya

The National Liquefied Gas Petroleum (LGP) sensitization and awareness campaign to reduce gas flare has kickstarted in 12 states across the country.

Speaking at a two-day sensitization and awareness campaign held in Abuja, Mr Dayo Adeshina, the programme manager National LPG expansion implementation plan (NLEIP), said the exercise was the commitment of the climate change initiative to reduce emission by 20 per cent.

He said the National LPG pilot programme, which will start after the sensitization, is to begin in Enugu and Ebonyi States for South-East then to the South-South States of Delta and Bayelsa and in the South West – Lagos and Ogun.

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In the North West are Sokoto and Katsina States; the North East batch will be done in Bauchi and Gombe States while in the North Central, it will kick off in Niger and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

He said, “The sensitization awareness campaign is targeted at 12 pilot states, two in each geo-political zone. During the campaign, we will highlight the importance of the LGP to the government and the people.

“Every year almost nine hundred thousand people are affected by the effects of kerosine and charcoal which leads to malaria, the government plan is to display the energy mixture which currently stands at 65 per cent, kerosine 30 per cent, LPG 5 per cent.

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“LPG would ensure accessibility, acceptability and affordability.”

Mr Adeshina said to drive the exercise well, an inter-ministerial committee on LPG was constituted and is being headed by the Vice President, Mr Yemi Osinbajo, adding that the composition of the committee shows the commitment of the federal government to the expansion and implementation of LPG in Nigeria.

“So, to make it available, some of the policy directives were worked on and past in 2017, the government will remove necessary bottlenecks,” he said.

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LPG is a fossil fuel closely linked to oil. As a fuel, it is used for cooking, lighting, and central heating. It is a clean-burning, non-poisonous, dependable and high-performance fuel stored and transported in containers as a liquid, but is generally drawn out and used as gas.

LPG has a very wide variety of uses, mainly used across many different markets – agricultural, recreation, hospitality, calefaction, construction, sailing and fishing sectors – as an efficient fuel.

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