23 Aug

Daily Watch – Sun International cuts out, TCN needs $7.5b to reach 11.5GW

  • Finance minister Kemi Adeosun has called on the Islamic Development Bank to support Nigeria in rebuilding its insurgency-ravaged northeast. She made the appeal on Monday during the inauguration of the IDB Country Gateway office in Abuja. Adeosun said the country was striving towards attaining the Sustainable Development Goals and would welcome the IDB’s support in achieving them. Adeosun enjoined the Bank to scale up its concessional resources and increase its overall financing exposure to Nigeria and other African member countries. The IDB is a multilateral development finance institution established in 1975 in Saudi Arabia; Nigeria became its 56th member country in 2005.
  • The TCN says its on-going five-year expansion programme, designed at expanding electricity transmission capacity to 11,500MW by 2019 will require $7.5 billion in funding. According to TCN MD, Abubakar Atiku, the company’s strategic plan, aimed at ensuring steady power supply, called for the completion of eight new projects, boosting transmission capability to 8,200MW by the end of 2018. He said when the expansion programme is realised in 2019, 59 completed projects will have a transmission capacity of 11,500MW. Atiku added that the five-year plan had been developed with the overall aim of realising uninterrupted power supply capacity of 20,000MW by 2022.
  • Sun International plans to exit Nigeria after the South African casino and hotel operator’s earnings in the country plunged amid a weakening economy and a dispute with its local partners. Sun International bought 49 percent of the NSE-listed Tourist Company of Nigeria in 2006, giving it part-ownership of the Federal Palace Hotel in Lagos, one of the main hotels used by travelling businessmen travelling. EBITDA at its Nigerian operations fell 58 percent in the 12 months through June, Sun said in a statement on Monday. Occupancy rates at the property fell to 42 percent. Other South African companies to have left Nigeria include retailers Woolworths Holdings and Truworths International, citing tough regulation and rising costs. MTN Group, Africa’s biggest mobile-phone provider, agreed to pay a ₦330 billion naira regulatory fine in the country earlier this year, leading to its first-ever half-year loss.
  • The CBN is understood to have removed ₦1.3 trillion in the last 60 days from the national economy in pursuit of an aggressive price and economic stability strategy. The regulator has in the period under review, raised its interventionist streak in using OMO auctions, like treasury bills to control the quantity of money in circulation – leading to varying degrees of impact on exchange rates, interest rates, inter-bank lending rates, inflation and FDIs. The naira firmed up on the interbank market on Monday after the CBN sold dollars to some lenders towards the end of a session that featured no trades in the first four hours, traders said. The naira closed at ₦305.50 to the dollar, 0.81 percent firmer than its Friday close.
  • AG Leventis may seek to raise fresh capital from foreign investors to boost its business amid a dwindling economic performance in 2016. Its CEO, Michael Economakis told The Vanguard on the sidelines of the company’s ‘Facts Behind the Figures’ at the NSE that plans are underway for the company to inject fresh capital given the current headwinds in the nation’s economy. He named strategic sectoral priorities for the company within the next two years to include FMCGs, automobile, agriculture and real estate. AG Leventis revenue rose 9 percent, from ₦5.936 billion in H1 2015 to ₦6.442 billion at the end of H1 2016. Total operational expenditure increased by 12 percent in H1 2016 from ₦1.269 billion to ₦1.425 billion, while profit before tax for the period declined by 298 percent to close at negative ₦494 million from a ₦249 million profit in H1 2015.
  • A total of 463.1 million financial transactions worth ₦33.87 trillion were settled by the country’s banks in H1 2016, new figures in an NBS report on electronic payment channels in the banking sector released on Sunday show. The NBS said the Nigeria Interbank Settlement Instant Payment System accounted for the highest settlement made by banks at ₦19.33 trillion, followed by the Nigeria Electronic Fund Transfer (₦7.67 trillion), while payment through cheques and ATMs followed with ₦3.3 trillion and ₦2.59 trillion, respectively.