• Monday, February 26, 2024
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Five things to know to start your Saturday

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Terrorists release four more Abuja-Kaduna train attack victims

Terrorists who attacked the Abuja-Kaduna AK9 train have released yet another four hostages in their custody.

The release, which took place on Friday, involved intensive negotiation between the Federal Government and the terrorists.

Among the freed hostages were 85-year-old Hajiya Halimatu Atta and her 53-year-old daughter, Adama Aliyu.

Tukur Mamu, who was part of the negotiating team that got the four hostages released, told the press that the FG and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) should do all within their power to get the youngest victim, Azurfa Lois John, a 21-year-old lady, freed as there was a plan by one of the terrorist commanders to marry her.

Mamu also pleaded that the Federal Government should do all within its power to get the remaining 23 hostages released.

Read also: Abuja-Kaduna train: We met all terrorists demands they failed to release all victims – FG

Nigeria, US collaborate to enhance security along Nigeria’s territorial waters

The Nigerian Navy, in collaboration with the US Embassy and the US Coast Guild, has entered into an agreement to enhance security along Nigeria’s territorial waters and the Gulf of Guinea.

The collaboration was announced during a press briefing on Friday in Lagos, when William Stevens reiterated his desire to strengthen bilateral collaboration between the US and Nigeria.

“We are so proud of that relationship,” he said. “Naval security and the safety of the open seas are absolute prerequisites to the growth of the global economy.”

“Ninety percent of the world’s trade moves on our oceans, and the ability to keep our oceans open and free to trade is essential to alleviating poverty around the world and increasing our ability to work with one another,” he added, excited about the collaboration he believes will improve trading safety along the Nigerian coastal route.

Andrew Pate, Commander, US Coast Guard Cutter Mohawk, speaking at the briefing, showed his excitement towards this latest collaboration, which will enhance the waterways’ safety. “Our belief is that security is everyone’s responsibility and we are excited to be here in Lagos. As the Consul General mentioned, we will be conducting discussions; we will be performing exercises, doing training, and working alongside the Nigerian Navy.” He concluded.

Yakubu Wambai, the Flag Officer Commanding, Western Naval Command, Apapa, spoke overwhelmingly about some of the gains the Nigerian Navy has achieved and believes this newest collaboration with the country with the most advanced navy fleet will consolidate the country’s achievements in the waterways.

“The International Maritime Bureau sometime in April of this year delisted Nigeria from the list of pirate states. That means we have not had any piracy incidents in the past ten or twelve months. Now this is a collaborative effort, “he said.

“It is a deliberate effort. It is a planned work due to the leadership of the Chief-of-Naval staff that has put in a task and a time line and followed up with proper guidance, ensuring that we maintain a close relationship with our foreign partners. And this collaborative effort of maintaining presence at sea with them always being around has been able to lead us to the state where we are. ” He concluded.

Russia becomes third largest market for Yuan payments

Sanctions on the Russian economy seem to have had a somewhat mixed effect, as the country’s exclusion from the dollar-based global system has pushed it to become the third-largest market for Yuan payments.

The country is only second to Hong Kong and Great Britain in the use of the Chinese Yuan.

According to Reuters, Russia had not even been on the monthly list published by global financial messaging firm SWIFT before its invasion of Ukraine in February.

Details from SWIFT showed that Russian firms and banks were involved in nearly 4 percent of all international Yuan payment transactions by value. a situation that was triggered by western-led sanctions.

Turkey’s central bank cuts interest rate by 100 BPS

The usual response for any central bank is to raise interest rates to fight inflation. However, the reverse was the case for Turkey, which on Thursday cut the interest rate by 100 basis points, taking it to 13 percent.

The reason for this unconventional move by the Sahap Kavcioglu-led apex bank is that it sees this move as trying to keep driving economic growth amid rising inflation triggered by the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The country’s currency, in response to the cut in lending rates, lost as much as 1.2 percent, trading at 18.15 per dollar. This is according to Reuters.

President Tayyip Erdogan sees this move as a necessary step to cut borrowing costs and increase sectorial spending in the country.

London Brent Crude set to extend its losses next week

Despite the recent supply upsurge in the global oil market, fears of a global recession seem not to be strong enough to drive the price of Brent crude lower than anticipated.

As a result, London Brent crude futures stayed at $97 per barrel, regaining some strength after Friday’s early morning losses.

However, fears of a recession made worse by falling demand and global interest rate hikes seem to be putting so much pressure on the market. With the recent US Fed Reserve Bank minutes signalling the monetary authorities’ commitment to pushing inflation to a manageable single-digit figure, the prospect of a higher price in the oil market seems to look more like a distant dream.

Meanwhile, the market still remains upbeat that the upcoming US-IRAN nuclear deal could boost oil supply by around 2.5 million barrels per day. an effect that could push the price even lower