Emefiele preaches economic patriotism at University of Benin

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The Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has taken his message of economic patriotism to the University of Benin, where he urged actors in the public and private sectors to look inwards in developing the Nigerian economy.

Emefiele gave the charge while delivering the third in the university’s series of Eminent Persons’ Lecture, charging all Nigerians to think of what they could do to improve the fortunes of the Nigerian economy, rather than what they could benefit from the economy.

In his lecture titled: “Beyond the Global Financial Crisis: Monetary Policy under Global Uncertainty”,  Emefiele noted that there was much potential within the Nigerian economy to make it as developed as other countries, which were its peers at independence but had gone ahead to become more developed.

The CBN Governor, who noted that the lecture was part of the Bank’s efforts at promoting research and collaboration with Universities, towards developing policies and programmes that will enhance the economic well-being of all Nigerians, highlighted how the crisis had helped to reshape monetary policy tools used by Central Banks to address dips in their economies.

Giving an overview of how central banks across different economic blocs responded to the global financial crisis, he noted that while the impact of the global financial crisis had little effect on the Nigerian economy, the drop-in commodity prices between 2014 – 2016, brought to the fore the limitation of conventional monetary policy tools.

According to him, “the 60 percent drop in crude oil prices between 2014 – 2016 along with normalization of Monetary Policy by the United States Federal Reserve Bank in 2014, imposed severe constraints on the Nigerian economy, given our reliance on crude oil for over 90 percent of our export earnings and 60 percent of government Read More...

A tenure of two halves

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A game of halves, a cliché among football commentators, is a good description of what to expect as Godwin Emefiele, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, is re-appointed for another five years. Will his second-term be markedly different from the first term? Can his second-half be expected to be a game changer?

His re-appointment has been called a vote of confidence and guarantees stability. Is it also a signal of the economic agenda to expect from President Buhari? No doubt the President approves of the other interventionist policies of the CBN. Policies Emefiele has pursued to keep the naira stable. An achievement to his credit. But at what cost?

The re-appointment of Emefiele will calm the nerves of bondholders who have piled $6 billion into government bonds since February. It guarantees that the exchange rate will be stable as the CBN will continue to intervene in the Investors’ and Exporters’ foreign exchange window, which Emefiele established in 2017.

Maintaining multiple foreign exchange rates preserves the myth of a stable currency. An artificially strong currency favours the government; it undervalues the ball0oning debt it has incurred mostly to fund recurrent budget expenses such as salaries, and much less on human capital development and physical infrastructure.

Confidence, stability and continuity are good, but not the tenuous variety. Multiple exchange rates continue to distort economic decision making. It makes financing expensive for those who continue to invest and limits competition as only a few can get dollars at the official rate. Many companies have shut-down and thousands of jobs lost simply because of this.

Consequently, economic growth is slow, a good job is hard to find, consumer spending weak and credit tight as banks lend less these days, and, if they do at all it’s at outrageous … Read More...

Analysts set agenda as Buhari nominates Emefiele for 2nd term

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As Godwin Emefiele, governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), prepares for the herculean tasks at the helm of the apex bank for a second five-year term, Nigerians expect him to focus on policies that will drive lasting growth across various sectors of the economy. President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday asked the Senate to…

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Emefiele breaks with tradition, races for a second five-year term

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There are strong indications that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele is about to clinch another 5-year term in office, breaking  the long-held tradition of just one term held by several of his predecessors. Sources said on Thursday morning that President Buhari who has been impressed with Emefiele’s policies which had, to a…

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When CBN repositions microfinance banks for real sector growth

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The vision of the Central Bank Nigeria (CBN) under the leadership of Godwin Emefiele, governor, is to create a people-centred Central Bank, delivering price and financial system stability as well as promoting sustainable economic development.

“We will collaborate with commercial banks to significantly improve the credit culture in the Nigerian banking system”, Emefiele said in his maiden speech as he assumed office in June 2014.

It was on this basis that the CBN and the bankers committee agreed in December to establish a national Microfinance bank across the 774 local governments, leveraging the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST).

Microfinance is about providing financial services to the economically active operators of the base of the income pyramid who are either undeserved or not served at all by conventional financial institutions.

Consistent with its developmental role the CBN in 2005 formulated the Microfinance Policy, Regulatory and Supervisory Framework. The policy was aimed among other at bringing microfinance institutions and activities into greater focus in order to deepen financial inclusion and alleviate the financing needs of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMES).

The CBN since then worked towards increasing access to financial services for the economically active poor in order to enhance job creation and poverty reduction. The target is to increase the share of micro credit as percentage of total credit to at least 20 percent by 2020.

To further deepen the understanding of the media on the policy and other CBN’s policies and interventions for the benefit of the society, the CBN last week engaged finance correspondents and business editors, in capacity building focusing on the theme, “Repositioning Microfinance Banks for Real Sector Growth”.

Recently, the Bank took some actions including a thorough review of the subsector, increased surveillance and revocation, where necessary. These measures were intended Read More...