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Five things to know to start your Friday

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Development Bank restates commitment to empowering MSMEs

The Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) has reaffirmed its commitment to empowering Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Northern Nigeria.

Tony Okpanachi, the Managing Director of DBN, made this announcement during a stakeholders’ conference organized by SDF, Kano Concerned Citizens, in partnership with DBN in Kano.

Okpanachi emphasised that empowering and building the capacity of MSMEs would address the challenges faced by businesses in Kano, Jigawa, and the entire Northern region.

He highlighted the importance of establishing sustainable ecosystems to support businesses and families in commercial centres like Kano. The theme, “Rise of commercial activities from our youths,” resonates with DBN’s core values and goals.

FG warns against illegal mining, urges stakeholders’ collaboration

The Federal Government warned on Thursday against illegal mining activities and urged strong collaboration with relevant stakeholders for sustainable development across the country.

Mary Ogbe, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, gave the warning while inaugurating the new National Executive Council of the Miners Association of Nigeria (MAN) in Abuja.

Ogbe also expressed concern over local industries, which depend on imported minerals as their raw materials despite the availability of such minerals in the country.

She said that some minerals were exported raw to Asian and European countries at ridiculous prices without value, adding that such a practise has added to the unemployment rate in the country.

Read also: Naira falls to N885 per dollar in parallel market

GenNext: Sanwo-Olu seeks private partnership on youth empowerment

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, urged organisations and individuals to collaborate with the state in empowering the youth.

He made this appeal during the inaugural edition of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) Generation Next Forum in Lagos on Thursday.

Emphasising the importance of bridging the gap between the present and the future, Sanwo-Olu called for initiatives that promote innovation and harness the transformative power of technology for the greater good.

The forum’s theme, “Industry 5.0 Banking Revolution: Insights for the Next Generation,” highlighted the significance of adopting cutting-edge practises in the banking sector.

The governor, represented by his deputy, Obafemi Hamzat, pledged continuous efforts to create a conducive environment for growth in critical sectors, including banking, within the state.

Pension Scheme contributors hit 10m in June – PenCom

The National Pension Commission (PenCom) on Thursday said the number of contributors for the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) rose to 10 million members as of June from 9.86 million members recorded in 2022.

Aisha Dahir-Umar, Director-General, PenCom, made the disclosure at a conference organised for journalists covering the pension and labour industries in Lagos.

Dahiru-Umar said that the membership of the CPS within the period under review increased by 146,920.

She stated that pension assets increased by N1.77 trillion in the first half of 2023, from N14.99 trillion in December 2022 to N16.76 trillion at the end of June.

According to her, the theme of the workshop: Transforming Service Delivery in the Pension Industry: Strategies for Improving Efficiency and Customer Satisfaction, is both timely and crucial.

The director general said this indicated PenCom’s commitment to continuous service improvement in the pension industry so that contributors and retirees receive the best possible experience.

UK’s July new car sales up more than 25%- SMMT

Preliminary industry data released on Friday by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) revealed a growth in new car registrations in Britain. In July, new car registrations soared by over 25 percent compared to the same period last year, marking the 12th consecutive monthly rise.

The surge in new car registrations indicates a positive trend in the automotive market, which shows a comeback in the industry amid challenging economic conditions.

Consumers’ increasing confidence, coupled with various incentives and new vehicle offerings, likely contributed to this growth.