Five things to know to start your Wednesday

eNaira was designed to provide financial inclusion to 36 million Nigerians – CBN

Rakiyat Mohammed, the Director of Information Technology at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has said that the eNaira was borne out of the need to provide financial inclusion for about 36 million Nigerians who currently don’t have access to financial services.

Mohammed revealed this on Tuesday at the Zenith Bank Tech Fair held in Lagos, aimed at not only spelling out the productive relationship between technology and financial services delivery but also driving ways to bring banking closer to the unbanked.

Delivering her presentation at the fair, which is themed “Future Forward,” Mohammed, who spearheaded the design and development of the eNaira, said that the CBN remains one of the pioneers of the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) globally.

She added that the CBDC was helping address the problem of unbanked Nigerians living in rural communities that cannot be easily assessed, making it possible for them to carry out financial transactions with the rest of the country.

Read also: One year after, eNaira lacks business case for banks

She said, that Nigeria has the 6th most advanced retail payment system in the world, which is evident in the success of the eNaira.

FG to grow oil reserves to 40bn barrels by 2025 – Sylva

Chief Timipre Silva, Minister of Petroleum Resources, says one of the key mandates of the ministry is to grow oil reserves from the current 37 billion barrels to 40 billion barrels by 2025.

Sylva said this on Tuesday at the official ground-breaking of the Oil Prospecting Licenses (OPLs) 809 and 810 at the Kolmani River II well, located in a border community between Bauchi and Gombe states.

According to NAN, the Kolmani Integrated Development Project was inaugurated by President Muhammadu Buhari with some top government officials, including governors, cabinet members, captains of industry, and Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd. (NNPCL) officials, among others, in attendance.

He said he was particularly excited about the partnership between NNPCL, Sterling Global Oil, and the New Nigeria Development Commission (NNDC) to carry out the drilling campaign.

“This is a testimony to the fact that the hydrocarbons sector still holds promise of returns on investment, highlighting the role that this resource will continue to play in the global energy mix,” Sylva said.

Union Bank receives Euromoney market rankings in 5 categories

Union Bank of Nigeria (UBN) Plc has received high ratings in five categories at the 2022 Euromoney market rankings.

Ogochukwu Ekezie-Ekaidem, the Chief Brand and Marketing Officer at UBN, made the announcement in a statement on Tuesday in Lagos.

According to NAN, the statement said that the bank was recognised as “highly regarded” in Corporate Banking, Corporate and Social Responsibility (CSR), and Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and classified as “notable” in SME banking and digital solutions.

“We are pleased to be recognised by Euromoney as “Highly Regarded” and “Notable” in these five categories.

“This recognition validates the success of our business strategy as we are a digital-led bank with a culture that embeds sustainability across all our operations using a unique triple-pillar model of citizenship, sustainability, and innovation.”

“We remain committed to doing our part to contribute to the environmental, socioeconomic, and financial development of our nation and continent while providing our customers with simpler, smarter solutions,” it said.

Euromoney Market Leaders is an independent global assessment of the leading financial service providers across key categories in each market.

Shoprite closes Congo operations

Shoprite, South African biggest retailer by market capitalization announced on Tuesday that it has shut down its operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The decision to close operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo is part of its long-term strategy to manage cost and drive profit by focusing on the South African domestic market, Shoprite said.

This closure follows similar closures in countries such as Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda and Madagascar.

“The decision to close operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo during this period is regrettable but is part of the group’s long-term strategy,” its statement said.

Shoprite’s three shops in Congo were among its 2,800 stores across 15 countries in Africa.

The company said its expansion plans had been hit by currency volatility, double-digit inflation, high import duties and dollar-based rentals.

Trump taxes: Supreme Court clears Democrats

The US Supreme Court has ordered former President Donald Trump’s tax forms to be released to a Democratic Party-controlled congressional committee.

The move is a major blow to Trump, who has tried for years to shield his tax returns from becoming public.

Trump became the first president in 40 years not to release his taxes after announcing his first presidential run.

The House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee has been seeking access to Trump’s taxes since 2019.

Trump, who launched his third campaign for the White House last week, is facing multiple investigations related to his business practices. He denies any wrongdoing.

Tuesday’s ruling allows a lower court’s order to stand, authorising the documents to be handed over to the committee.

It supersedes an order issued by Chief Justice John Roberts on 1 November that put the request on hold as the panel’s nine judges deliberated. This is according to the BBC.

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