By Dipo Olowookere
Governor of Oyo State, Mr Abiola Ajimobi, has disclosed that a partnership was been entered into with Dangote Group for the massive production of rice in the agrarian state.
Mr Ajimobi made this disclosure last Thursday during an Agriculture Investment Summit and Exhibition held at the Conference Centre, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan, the state capital.
According to the Governor, his administration has made modest efforts to buttress its unflinching commitment and determination for further agricultural development including the exploitation of value addition in the agricultural chain in Oyo State.
He said that the state government has developed 25-year Oyo State Agriculture road map as well as nine agro industrial parks in the forest reserves, saying that the state has a realistic Agricultural Land policy of 250,000Ha which provides for allocation of various hectares to individuals, groups and corporate Bodies for farming.
The Governor said through the Oyo State Government Agricultural Initiative (OYSAI), 750 metric tons of maize and 865 metric tons of cassava have been produced so far with the collaboration with the Dangote Group for massive Rice production.
He noted that the present administration in the state has distributed 7.5 million latest hybrids of cocoa, maize and cashew seedlings to farmers for free as well as the provision of infrastructure for Extension Officers to strengthen extension service delivery to rural farmers.
The Governor said that the state government has engaged in the procurement of 388 tractors and matching implements for mechanized farming; procurement and distribution of over 10,000 metric tons of assorted fertilizers and agro chemicals yearly at highly subsidized rates to farmers, establishment of linkage between Primary producers and processors (integrated value chain process), disbursement of over N1 billion loan to farmers to enhance farming activities in the state and collaboration with FGN and International Development Partners/Agencies for further infrastructural development.
He called on agricultural research institutes and other stakeholders to come up with innovative and proactive ideas that will enhance agriculture development in Nigeria, disclosing that the 28,454 arable land areas in the state remain as a veritable investment destination for local and global investors.
Mr Ajimobi said that the summit with the theme Transforming Oyo State’s Agriculture and Agro-Allied Industry: Private Sector Participation was very apt at a time that the country was looking for a permanent solution to the problem of food insecurity, unemployment and retard in rural development as well as obsolete technology in our great nation.
“It gladdens my heart that this summit is holding today and I am more delighted to note that though the State parades a lot of research institutions, this is the first attempt to synergize with the leading agro-based research institute in tropical Africa – IITA, from which we expect tremendous and realistic support and outcome.
“It must therefore be noted that once we succeed particularly by ensuring a demand driven solution, we would have consolidated our mission. This summit became imperative in order to bridge the gap among farmers, processors, agro allied industries, Government, agricultural/commercial banks and other stakeholders with the ultimate aim to trigger the Oyo State’s agro and agro allied sectors,” Mr Ajimobi said.
In his address, Commissioner for Agriculture, Natural Resources and Rural Development in the state, Mr Oyewole Oyewumi, said agriculture was no longer being practiced for private consumption but now a major enterprise that drives the economy of developed countries
He said this necessitated the reason why the state government commenced investigation on how agriculture could be used to benefit the industries.
On his part, Deputy Director of IITA, Dr. Kenton Dashiell, called for motivation of agro dealers to create opportunities for private investors in the agriculture sector.
Access Holdings Merges Sigma, FGPL for Formidable PFA Business
By Aduragbemi Omiyale
To create a formidable pension funds administration (PFA) business in Nigeria, Access Holdings Plc has merged its subsidiary, First Guarantee Pension Limited (FGPL), with Sigma Pensions Limited.
The marriage between the two PFAs was made possible after Access Holdings acquired an indirect equity stake in Sigma.
Recall that in October, the company announced that it was buying a stake in Sigma to revolutionise the PFA sector.
On Thursday, a court approved the merger between the firm and FGPL, giving room for the organisations to become one and offer innovative products to customers.
A notice signed by the group company secretary of Access Holdings, Mr Sunday Ekwochi, confirmed the development.
“Sequel to our announcement on October 25, 2022, Access Holdings Plc, trading as Access Corporation, today announces the completion of its acquisition of an indirect equity stake in Sigma and the merger of its subsidiary, FGPL, with Sigma.
“Following the sanction of the scheme of merger between Sigma and FGPL by the Federal High Court on December 1, 2022, FGPL has been dissolved without winding up, leaving Sigma as the surviving entity,” a part of the statement dated Friday, December 2, 2022.
“Following the successful completion of the merger, our plan is to leverage the synergies of these entities, as well as the corporation’s expansive distribution network, strong risk management culture and best-in-class governance standards to create a formidable pension funds administration business,” the group chief executive of Access Holdings, Mr Herbert Wigwe, stated.
FrieslandCampina Buoys Unlisted Securities Market by 1.11%
By Adedapo Adesanya
The NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) Securities Exchange returned to the positive zone on Friday, December 2, as it appreciated by 1.11 per cent at the close of business.
This was driven by a gain in the stock price of FrieslandCampina Wamco Nigeria Plc. The company appreciated by N5.29 price to close at N66.63 per share versus the previous day’s price of N61.34 per share.
This outweighed the 1 Kobo loss recorded by UBN Property Plc during the session as the price of the property investment company went down to 91 Kobo per unit from the preceding session’s 92 Kobo.
When the market closed for the day, the total value of the unlisted securities market increased by N10.27 billion to N933.71 billion from N923.44 billion.
In the same vein, the NASD Unlisted Securities Index (NSI) stretched by 7.82 basis points to 710.58 basis points from the 702.76 basis points in the previous session.
During the session, there was a surge in the volume of securities by 140,993.7 per cent as investors exchanged 2.2 million units, in contrast to the previous day’s 14,508 units.
Likewise, the value of shares traded at the session ballooned by 1,526.6 per cent to N10.7 million from the N657,534.75 recorded a day earlier, while the number of deals improved by 400 per cent to 20 deals from four deals.
When the market closed for the day, AG Mortgage Bank Plc was the most traded stock by volume (year-to-date) with 2.3 billion units valued at N1.2 billion, Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) Plc occupied second place with 687.8 million units worth N14.3 billion, while Lighthouse Financials Services Plc was in third place with 224.7 million units valued at N112.3 million.
Also, CSCS Plc ended the day as the most traded stock by value (year-to-date) by trading 687.8 million units worth N14.3 billion, VFD Group Plc was in second place with 29.1 billion units valued at N7.7 billion, and FrieslandCampina WAMCO Plc was in third place after selling 16.8 million units worth N1.9 billion.
Naira Sells N730/$1 in Black Market, N748/$1 at P2P, N445.33/$1 at I&E
By Adedapo Adesanya
Normalcy seems to have returned to the currency market in Nigeria as the Naira further appreciated against the United States Dollar at the various segments of the ecosystem.
In the Investors and Exporters (I&E) segment of the foreign exchange (forex) market, the Nigerian currency gained 50 Kobo or 0.11 per cent to quote at N445.33/$1, in contrast to Thursday’s rate of N445.83/$1.
It was observed that domestic currency withstood significant FX demand pressure during the trading session as forex traders completed transactions worth $159.02 million compared with the $99.50 million executed a day earlier, indicating a 59.1 per cent or $59.52 million increase in FX turnover.
Also, in the Peer-to-Peer (P2P) window, the local currency appreciated against the greenback by N14 or 1.8 per cent to trade at N748/$1 compared with the preceding day’s N762/$1.
In the same vein, the value of the Nigerian currency to its American counterpart improved by N10 yesterday to sell for N735/$1 against N745/$1 of the preceding trading session.
However, in the interbank segment, the Naira lost N3.19 against the Euro on Friday as it closed at N464.98/€1 versus Thursday’s exchange rate of N461.79/€1, and against the Pound Sterling, it depreciated by N7.66 to quote at N542.33/£1 compared with the previous day’s N534.67/£1.
Meanwhile, the cryptocurrency market rebounded yesterday as investors showed renewed interest in digital assets, causing the value of Dogecoin (DOGE) to rise by 2.6 per cent to $0.1016.
Further, Cardano (ADA) recorded a 1.8 per cent increase to sell at $0.3189, Ethereum (ETH) saw its value go up by 1.3 per cent to close at $1,289.56, and Solana (SOL) appreciated by 1.4 per cent to trade at $13.65.
In addition, Binance Coin (BNB) grew by 1.1 per cent to settle at $291.72, Litecoin (LTC) appreciated by 1.0 per cent to trade at $77.23, Ripple (XRP) made a 0.9 per cent rise to finish at $0.3924, and Bitcoin (BTC) rose by 0.5 per cent to $17,030.33.
However, the US Dollar Tether (USDT) and Binance USD (BUSD) closed flat at $1.00 on Friday.
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