• Saturday, April 20, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Nigeria’s finance minister reiterates commitment to capital market development

Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed

Nigeria’s finance minister, Zainab Ahmed says the Federal Government will continue to strengthen its efforts in ensuring the growth and development of the capital market.

Zainab stated this at the maiden edition of the 2019 capital market award night, where the Securities and Exchange Commission rewarded market operators who have contributed immensely to the growth of the market.

“The Federal Government of Nigeria particularly the federal ministry of finance reiterates its commitment towards building lasting and enduring capital market. We are standing by and ready to continue to partner with you to provide any support that you might require to ensure that our capital market grows and that our economy succeeds”, Zainab said.

According to her, the capital market is a microcosm of the entire economy, hence its development will invariably transform into the development of the entire economy.

In November 2014, the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) mapped out a 10-year plan for the development of the Nigerian capital market (the Master Plan), aimed at restoring investors’ confidence, deepen the market, accelerate the growth of the capital market and help catalyse the emergence of Nigeria as the top 20 global economy.

The core objective of the Master Plan was to map out strategies for the improvement of the Nigerian capital market in key areas such as investor protection and education, professionalism, and product innovation, and for the expansion of the capital market’s role in Nigeria’s economy.

“I am pleased to say that we have made a great stride in our implementation efforts”, said Mary Uduk, Acting Director-General of SEC.

“We have taken up the initiative outlined in the document in a systematic manner while also painstakingly engaging the government, its agencies and other critical stakeholders whose support and collaboration are required to achieve the objectives outlined in the master plan”, Uduk said at the event.

Uduk explained that of the over 90 initiatives outlined in the master plan, 66 have commenced since 2016 out of which 13 have been successfully completed, while 55 initiatives are at various stages of implementation and we hope many of them would be concluded by the end of this year.

Some of these initiatives she said have been completed include the materialization of shares, the capitalization of capital market operators, setting up of a national investment protection funds and the establishment of the West African securities regulators association among others, the SEC boss said.

On her path, the Finance minister noted that when the federal government made copious references to the master plan by the exchange commission when it was preparing the Economic Recovery and growth plan.

According to her, the ERGP visions for the financial services sector is aimed at strengthening relevant market institutions and mitigate risk by building a competitive healthy financial system that would be a better position to support private sector growth and contribute towards the sustainable development of the economy.

“Just like in the capital market master plan, the ERGP policy objective for the financial sector is to further diversify the traded instrument on the stock market, review the capitalization of the financial institution, and encourage lending to the real sector”, the minister said.

In order to appreciate the tremendous support the commission has received from market operators and various stakeholders from within and outside the market; the Securities and Exchange Commission awarded 18 market operators for their giant stride in propelling the growth of the market.

Among these awardees include Olutola Mobolurin, who chaired the committee on the Capital Market Masterplan Implementation Council (CAMMIC); Emeka Madubike, chairman committee on Full Dematerialization; Hajara Adeola, Non-interest Capital market products; Adeolu Bajomo, chairman Direct Cash Settlement; Isyaku Tilde, chairman New Minimum Capital Requirement and Complaints Management Framework implementation; Henry Rowlands, chairman E-dividend Mandate; Bola Ajomale, chairman New Listing; Oluwatoyin Sanni, chairman Financial Literacy; Micheal Oyebola, National Savings Strategy chairman; and Babatunde Ajibade, chairman pension Reforms, Financial Reporting acts and Warehouse Receipt Bill.

Others committee chairmen include, Anthony Idigbe, who chaired the committee on Review of the Investment and Securities Act 2007; Abubakar Mahmoud, chairman Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) and Trustees Investments Act (TIA) Review; Adeolu Bajomo, chairman committee on Market Wide Infrastructure Technology, Daisy Ekineh, Roadmap on Commodities Eco-System; Temi Popoola, chairman on Market Liquidity Enhancement; Abubakar Ambursa, chairman committee on Standardization of Capital Market Operators Operational Processes; and Seyi Owoturo, chairman on Electronic Initial Public Offering (e-IPO).

 

MICHEAL ANI