09 Oct

Daily Watch – Interbank rate falls to 5-year low, BoI works on pilot solar grid

  • Nigeria’s interbank overnight lending rate fell to a five-year low on Thursday, as a result of excess liquidity in the market that spurred renewed bond buying from commercial lenders and pension funds, traders said. The overnight lending rate fell to 1 percent from the previous day. It had hovered around a three-month low of 3 percent last week after the central bank repaid matured open market bills and did not issue fresh ones to mop up the funds, to keep borrowing costs low..
  • The Bank of Industry has partnered with Schneider Electric, Green Village Electricity (GVE) Projects Limited, and Arnergy Solar Limited to provide low-cost, off-grid solar energy solutions in six states.┬áThe project, according to Schneider, is designed to provide 24kw of PV solar based off-grid electricity system to rural communities in Anambra, Delta, Gombe, Kaduna, Niger and Osun states. The system will supply electricity to around 200 clients (residential and commercial) in each of the communities through a 2km 230VAC, 50Hz mini-grid electricity distribution network. With an average household size of seven, the estimated direct impact of the whole project is about 7,000 people, while an additional 500 people will be impacted indirectly through the cottage businesses and street lighting components also attached to the project.
  • West African crude differentials started to slip on Thursday as a large overhang of Nigerian cargoes and high freight costs started to weigh on sentiment. Differentials of Nigerian crude are still well up from multi year lows set in the summer, supported by demand from Europe and South America, with October cargoes selling relatively quickly. High freight costs have contributed to relatively slow November sales, with more than 40 of 63 cargoes for the month still available less than two weeks before December cargoes come to market.
  • Access Bank, is considering expanding into new markets in Europe and Asia as it targets achieving 20 percent of revenue overseas from 10 percent by 2018, the bank’s chief executive said. The bank already has operations in 10 overseas markets, mainly in Africa, but is targeting countries outside the continent as a “balance” against Africa, said Wigwe. Its non-African markets include China and Britain, with its UK subsidiary on Wednesday announcing the opening a representative office in Dubai. The bank is tapping into the United Arab Emirates’ status as a burgeoning centre for the flow of trade between Africa and Asia. UAE trade with Africa rose from $2.5 billion in 2000 to $22.8 billion in 2013, according to Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Access Bank hopes to eventually gain approval to offer trade finance and other services from its Dubai office in the future.