NLC, TUC suspend strike, demand fixing refineries, others
The Nigerian Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress have agreed to suspend the planned nationwide strike scheduled to begin on Wednesday.
After hours of meeting with government representatives led by Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the House of Representatives, they agreed to suspend the strike after the government said it will review their demands.
The demands include reviewing the minimum wage, cash transfers scheme from the World Bank’s $800m loan, reviving the CNG project for labour centers, and reviving the ailing education sector.
Fuel Subsidy: Abuja Chamber of Commerce seeks palliatives to ease pressure on SMEs
The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) has called on the government to provide palliatives, especially as the removal of fuel subsidy may engender the growth and survival of many Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) if not managed properly.
This was the view of the organisation as contained in a statement it issued on Monday in Abuja by the President of ACCI, Al-Mujtaba Abubakar.
Abubakar, who spoke on behalf of the Executive Council and members of ACCI, commended the fuel subsidy removal but urged the Federal Government to provide SMEs with business palliatives to ease the pressure.
According to him, though the removal of the fuel subsidy may seem like the right step in the right direction, as it deregulates the oil sector and allows for competition in the industry, the government should provide such palliatives.
AfDB reiterates commitment to support women-led enterprises in Africa
The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group has reinstated its unequivocal commitment to supporting and ensuring that women-led enterprises succeed on the African continent.
In a statement on its website, the bank said it will provide grants to small businesses to ensure this is achieved.
“The AfDB’s Gender Equality Trust Fund (GETF) will provide a $950,000 grant to the Africa Small and Medium Enterprise Business Linkages (SMEBL) Programme in Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger.
“The grant, which will supplement an earlier $3.9 million financing grant from the Bank’s Transition Support Facility, is expected to bolster 1,400 women-led enterprises.
“It will also contribute to the region’s economic resilience and social cohesion,” it said.
International airlines target 4.54 billion passengers, $803bn revenue
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has said that its focus is on strengthening the airline industry’s profitability outlook for the year.
In the 79th Annual General Meeting and World Transport Summit taking place in Istanbul, Turkey, Willie Walsh, the Director-General, IATA, said the airline industry’s net profits are expected to reach $9.8 billion in 2023, an amount that represents over a 100 percent increase over the previous forecast of $4.7 billion (December 2022).
He said, “Airline industry operating profits are expected to reach $22.4 billion in 2023, much improved over the December forecast of a $3.2 billion operating profit. It is also more than double the $10.1 billion operating profit estimated for 2022.”
According to IATA data released at the summit, some 4.35 billion people are expected to travel in 2023, which is closing in on the 4.54 billion who flew in 2019.
Former VP Mike Pence officially enters 2024 Republican presidential race
Former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Monday declared himself a candidate in the 2024 Republican race for the White House, setting up a fight against former President Donald Trump.
Pence’s campaign filed a declaration of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission.
Pence will launch his campaign with a video and a speech in the early nominating state of Iowa on Wednesday, three sources familiar with the situation told Reuters last week.
Pence’s run pits him against front-runner Trump, whom he once loyally stood by but refused to back when the former president attempted to overturn the results of the 2020 election won by Democrat Joe Biden. (Reuters)