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FG extends new passport regime by 1 week

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FG extends new passport regime by 1 week

The Comptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Mr Muhammad Babandede, has extended the commencement of the new Passport regime earlier scheduled for June 1 by one week.

Spokesperson for the agency, Mr Amos Okpu, made this known in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the service had announced the suspension of receiving and processing of all fresh passport applications nationwide until June 1.

NAN also reports that the suspension was to allow for clearance of backlog of all passport applications received before May 17, as all backlogs were expected to be cleared by May 31.

“Babandede wishes to inform the public, especially Passport applicants that the Service had made significant progress in the clearance exercise of backlog of Passport applications.

“So far, a total number of 230,500 applications have been cleared and the Passports produced. Out of the number, a total of 43,350 are yet to be collected.

“Passport Control Officers have been directed to continue to send out short message notifications for collection to all applicants,” Okpu added.

The Immigration boss further directed that details of all Passports that are yet to be collected be uploaded on the service website www.immigration.gov.ng for the attention of the public.

“The extension is to clear up all backlog of Passport applications across Issuing Centres.

“A huge number of applicants are already turning up to collect their Passports across Issuing Centres and this is causing some forms of congestion.

“ This situation will not allow the Service to accommodate new applications especially considering our desire to ensure that people who come to our offices comply with all the COVID-19 Protocols.

“This period shall be used to attend to applicants for collection, clear all the remaining backlogs as well as improve systems automation for the takeoff of the new Passport regime which will commenced by June 8,” he said.

Babandede assured the public of full commitment to improve service delivery to all Passport applicants and others.

NAN

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Economy

NEXIM Bank urges FG to boost regional trade

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By Gistflash

June 16, 2021T

he Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM Bank) has advised the Federal Government to make effort to boost Nigeria’s trade in the ECOWAS and African continent.

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Mr Abba Bello, Managing Director, NEXIM Bank, gave the advice  in Abuja on Wednesday, at the ongoing Nigeria @ 60 Exhibition of Made in Nigeria Products and  Cultural Display.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the exhibition was organised by the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Nigeria @ 60, in collaboration with Business Visa and Trainings Co. Ltd.

According to Bello, Nigeria’s regional trade is low at less than 12 per cent and 15 per cent for ECOWAS and the African continent, respectively.

This is in spite of Nigeria’s ranking as the biggest economy in Africa with a GDP of about $477 billion and contributing over 60 per cent of ECOWAS GDP.

Bello, while speaking on “the Fundamentals of Branding and Financing Made in Nigeria Products for Export’’ highlighted key issues that must be addressed for the country to increase export and boost regional trade.

He said  that Nigeria had the best chance to promote rapid industrialisation and boost manufactured exports in the regional market, where it had comparative advantage.

On developing Services Export, he noted that services contributed over 50 per cent of Nigeria’s GDP, yet the country did not have significant footprint in services export.

He said that this needed to be addressed.

“Currently, Nigeria’s Nollywood industry is ranked among the most prolific in the world.

“Empirical evidence also indicates that Nigeria can compete favourably in such areas as ICT and other professional services,’’ he said.

Bello said that Branding for Export was important to export, as it could affect product perception, which may create customer loyalty or lead to product rejection, as the case may be.

“It has been said that poor branding is one of the reasons why Nigerian products, particularly value-added products, have not performed optimally in the international market.

“An exporter should therefore see himself/herself as an ambassador, as his activities/products will not only impact his brand, but could impact the bigger brand, that is, the image of our country Nigeria.

“Product Packaging and Labeling as well as availability of well-equipped testing labs are quite critical to ensuing product quality, which impact on the exporter and Nigeria’s brand.

“Equally important is the activities of regulatory agencies like the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), and the Nigerian Agricultural Quarantine Services,’’ he said.

According to Bello, the dearth of quality labs/ quality packaging provides investment opportunities for entrepreneurs, while helping to promote export.

He said that Nigeria’s export, currently dominated by raw/semi-processed, mainly agricultural commodities, usually attracts low export prices.

“There is a need to increasingly add value to our products to boost export revenues and create more jobs,’’ Bello said.

He said it was instructive to enhance credit flow to the non-oil export sector, especially with regard to supporting capital investments in productive assets.

This, according to him, is necessary toward realisation of the key objectives of economic diversification.

NAN

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Economy

MTNN lifts trading on NGX by 0.15%

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By Gistflash

June 16, 2021

Trading activities on the Nigerian Exchange rebounded on Wednesday with a gain of 0.15 per cent due to interest in MTN Nigeria Communications (MTNN).

Specifically, the All-Share Index increased by 57.41points or 0.15 per cent to close at 38,564.70 from 38,507.29 achieved on Tuesday.

Consequently, the month-to-date return increased to 0.3 per cent, while the year-to-date loss moderated to 4.2 per cent.

Similarly, the market capitalisation rose by N30 billion or 0.15 per cent to close at N20.099 trillion against N20.069 trillion posted on Tuesday.

The market upturn was driven by price appreciation in large and medium capitalised stocks amongst which are: Seplat, MTNN, Africa Prudential, Unilever and United Bank for Africa.

As measured by market breadth, market sentiment turned positive with 27 gainers against 21 losers.

Cornerstone Insurance dominated the gainers’ chart in percentage terms with 10 per cent to close at 55k per share.

Morison Industries followed with 9.68 per cent to close at N1.36 and Learn Africa rose by 6.52 per cent to close at 98k per share.

Africa Prudential appreciated by 5.79 per cent to close at N6.40, while Courteville Business Solutions garnered five per cent to close at 21k per share.

On the other hand, Abbey Mortgage Bank led the laggards’ chart in percentage terms with 9.52 per cent to close at 95k per share.

Consolidated Hallmark Insurance trailed with 9.46 per cent to close at 67k, while CWG shed 7.26 per cent to close at N1.15 per share.

Wapic Insurance dropped 7.02 per cent to close at 53k, while Regency Alliance Insurance depreciated by 6.25 per cent to close at 45k per share.

Also, the total volume of shares traded increased by 1.81 per cent to 302.72 million shares valued at N2.81 billion exchanged in 4,387 deals.

This was in contrast with 297.35 million shares worth N3.65 billion transacted in 4,402 deals on Tuesday.

Transactions in the shares of Sterling Bank topped the activity chart with 37.47 million shares valued at N57.83 million.

Ecobank Transnational Incorporated followed with 27.39 million shares worth N142.47 million, while Wema Bank traded 27.15 million shares valued at N15.002 million.

Guaranty Trust Bank sold 26.49 million shares worth N745.34 million, while Japaul Gold and Ventures transacted 22.14 million shares valued at N11.04 million.

NAN

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Economy

NGX market indices up 0.10% in bullish trading

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By Gistflash

June 10, 2021

The bullish run in the local bourse persisted on Thursday with the key market indicators increasing further by 0.10 per cent.

Consequently, the All-Share Index advanced by 39.15 points or 0.10 per cent to close at 39,210.10 from 39,170.95 recorded on Wednesday.

Accordingly, month-to-date gain increased to 2.0 per cent, while year-to-date loss moderated to 2.6 per cent.

The market capitalisation gained N21 billion to close at N20.437 trillion, in contrast with N20.416 trillion on Wednesday.

The market upturn was driven by price appreciation in large and medium capitalised stocks, amongst which are Unilever Nigeria, PZ Cussons, Vitafoam, Dangote Sugar Refinery and May and Baker.

The market breadth closed positive with 19 gainers against 15 laggards.

Linkage Assurance recorded the highest price to lead the gainers’ chart in percentage terms with 9.09 per cent to close at 60k per share.

PZ Cussons followed with 7.46 per cent to close at N6 per share.

May and Baker and Chams rose by five per cent each to close at N4.20 and 21k per share, respectively.

Unilever gained 4.96 per cent to close at N12.70 per share.

On the other hand, Computer Warehouse Group led the losers’ chart in percentage terms by 9.60 per cent to close at N1.13 per share.

Consolidated Hallmark Insurance followed with 8.97 per cent to close at 71k, while Associated Bus Company lost 7.50 per cent to close at 37k per share.

Wapic Insurance dipped 6.78 per cent to close at 55k, while Mutual Benefit Assurance shed 6.52 per cent each to close at 43k per share.

However, the total volume of trades decreased by 12.8 per cent to 158.37 million shares valued at N2.24 billion exchanged in 3,330 deals.

It was against a turnover of 181.53 million shares worth N3.96 billion achieved in 3,217 deals on Wednesday.

Transactions in the shares of Zenith Bank topped the activity chart with 27.32 million shares valued at N629.22 million.

Sterling Bank followed with 22.02 million shares worth N35.09 million, while United Bank for Africa traded 21.69 million shares valued at N154.24 million.

Transcorp sold 9.15 million shares worth N8.15 million, while Chams transacted 8.32 million shares worth N1.68 million.

NAN

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