• Saturday, February 24, 2024
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Five things to know to start your Wednesday

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2024 budget: President Tinubu, VP Shettima allocate N15b for 2024 travels

President Bola Tinubu and Vice President Kashim Shettima, with aides, plan to allocate N15.961 billion for travels in 2024 as per the 2024 Appropriation Bill under review.

Tinubu’s travel expenses amount to N7.630 billion, mostly for foreign trips, while Shettima’s total is N1.847 billion.

Additionally, N6.484 billion is allotted for Villa Headquarters’ international and local travels.

The budget also includes provisions for maintenance, vehicles, construction, and miscellaneous expenditures.

Lagos Blue Rail Line thrives with 400,000+ passengers

Lagos’ Blue Rail Line saw over 400,000 passengers by November 29, revealed by LAMATA during its 20th-anniversary conference.

Managing Director Abimbola Akinajo praised the line’s efficiency, boasting 52 daily trips.

Despite initial hiccups, the Marina to Mile 2 phase has been a success since its September launch.

The second phase, extending to Okoko, is under construction with a 2027 completion target.

Red Line operations are set for mid-2024, emphasising LAMATA’s commitment to electric bus deployment.

CBN unification move leads to $1.6bn forex reserve drop

Nigeria’s forex reserves dipped by $1.6 billion to $32.97 billion after the Central Bank moved to unify exchange rates.

The apex bank abolished rate segmentation, consolidating all segments into the Investors and Exporters window, while reintroducing the ‘Willing Buyer, Willing Seller’ model.

This change led to declining reserves and a weakened naira, down by over 40 percent.

Limited forex supply, weak export earnings, and growing demand persist as challenges in the FX market.
Deadline set: Presidential aircraft bidders have until December 24.

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has set a December 24 deadline for bids on the sale of its Falcon 900B aircraft, a part of the presidential air fleet.

The sale, approved by the Federal Government, was announced via the NAF X page.

Interested buyers were instructed to submit bids electronically or physically, ensuring strict confidentiality.

NAF highlighted compliance with the Public Procurement Act of 2007 and promised immediate processing post-deadline.

Oil prices fall on China concerns, scepticism about OPEC+ cuts

Oil prices dipped in Asian trading amid doubts regarding OPEC+ cuts and China’s weakened demand.

Brent crude fell 0.1 percent to $77.12 a barrel; WTI crude dropped 0.2 percent to $72.19, both hitting their lowest since July 6.

Concerns persist over the OPEC+ cuts’ effectiveness. Russian comments on further actions had limited impact.

Putin’s talks in Saudi Arabia and UAE on oil cooperation are awaited.

China’s economic outlook and upcoming trade data also drive market sentiment. U.S. inventory reports expect a rise.