21 Jun

Daily Watch – Float gets off to bright start, Unions threaten oil industry

  • The CBN has cleared a foreign exchange demand backlog of $4.02 billion on the first day of the implementation of a new foreign exchange regime which allowed the naira to float freely and effectively reflect market realities for the first time. The regulator, through a Special Secondary Market Intervention Sales, cleared the forex demand backlog through spot and forward sales. CBN’s intervention in the market, according to a spokesman, was in line with its desire to promote a transparent, liquid and efficient market, and in order to engender market confidence and ensure credible price formation. The naira plunged 31 percent to ₦288.85 against the American dollar on Monday at the close of trading at the newly established interbank market; while it also depreciated at the parallel market where it closed at ₦346 per dollar, down from a band of between ₦330 and ₦335 on Friday.
  • The governor of Kwara, Abdulfattah Ahmed, says the school feeding programme by the FG for junior secondary school pupils in Nigeria, will help to stimulate local agriculture support schemes across in the country. Ahmed described the programme as a concrete effort in boosting human capital development in both education and agriculture. Ekiti governor, Ayodele Fayose had last week said that the school feeding programme must be done without the proposed 40 percent counterpart funding from the states. The National Home Grown School Feeding Strategic Plan was launched in early June by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo and is targeted at twenty million children of school age across the country. The one-meal per day programme will be funded as part of the ₦500 billion earmarked in the 2016 budget to social investment programmes.
  • PENGASSAN has threatened to shut down operations and activities in the oil and gas industry if some employers in the industry do not stop what they call “anti-labour practices.” The union issued a seven-day ultimatum within which employers should end all anti-labour practices in their companies or risk an industrial action that would totally ground the oil and gas industry. The prospect of yet another oil employee shutdown in Nigeria’s oil industry threatens to worsen the economic slowdown in Africa’s largest economy which has been battered by the fall in oil prices since mid-2014 amid a drop in production this year to an almost three-decade low as militants bomb crude and gas pipelines.