12 Sep

Daily Watch – Capital importation goes electronic, Shoreline bags Lagos mega gas deal

  • The CBN will start issuing electronic certificates for capital imported into the country, in a bid to improve its currency transfer process, next week. The new certificate will replace a hard copy now issued when capital is imported. The regulator said the move would enhance transparency and efficient processing of foreign investment. Investors or companies are required by a 1995 law to get certificates within 24 hours declaring they have invested foreign currency in Nigeria. They must have the certificates to repatriate returns on those investments. Under the old rule, investors struggled to meet the one-day deadline to get the certificates, bankers say.
  • Stanbic IBTC facilitated $589.84 million, an equivalent of ₦216.47 billion in capital inflows into the country in Q2 2017, ranking it first among financial institutions that imported capital into Nigeria. According to the NBS’ latest capital importation report, Stanbic IBTC accounted for 32.91 percent of the total share during the period, a 9.12 percent increase on the $536.78 million it posted in the first quarter of the year, bringing to $1.127 billion (₦413.62 billion) the capital imported by Stanbic IBTC in the first six months of the year. The trio of Stanbic IBTC, Citibank Nigeria Limited and Standard Chartered Bank Plc accounted for 70.7 percent or $1.267.8 million of the total $1.792 billion capital importation during the quarter, while the other 22 banks generated the rest. The NBS report showed that the bulk of capital imported into Nigeria in Q2 came from the United Kingdom, which accounted for $696.7 million or 38.87 percent of the total with the United States coming in second with $287.82 million or 16.06 percent.
  • Oando held its annual shareholder meeting on Monday after regulators gave it the green light despite an ongoing dispute over its ownership structure, sending shares in the energy company higher. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said in July it was investigating Oando’s shareholding structure following its $1.65 billion acquisition of ConocoPhillips’s Nigerian business in 2014. A company source said the dispute centred on the ownership of some Oando shares bought through an investment vehicle at the time of the ConocoPhillips deal. Oando Chief Executive Adewale Tinubu told shareholders the SEC had allowed the meeting to proceed as the company had disclosed the relevant information to the regulator. The company passed resolutions retaining its auditor Ernst & Young and adopting its 2016 accounts, an Oando spokesman said. Oando bought ConocoPhillips’s Nigerian business in a bid to add oil exploration and production to its petroleum products retailing businesses. But high financing costs coupled with lower oil prices hit profits, analysts say.
  • Shoreline Energy has signed a $300 million agreement with Shell Nigeria to develop gas infrastructure around the commercial capital, Lagos, both companies said on Monday. Shell said in June that it would place more emphasis on gas rather than oil in Nigeria, which has the world’s ninth-largest proven gas reserves at 187 trillion cubic feet. Shoreline said the agreement was to develop, buy, market, distribute and sell natural gas in the Victoria Island, Ikoyi, Lekki and Epe districts — areas that contain the city’s business hub and some of the country’s most expensive residential properties. It said the agreement provided exclusive rights to distribute and sell gas in those areas. “The partnership is a significant boost to the gas supply efforts of the Federal and Lagos State governments and will deliver tangible benefits to companies and households in Lagos,” said Shoreline’s chairman, Kola Karim. A spokesman for the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria said the company was “exploring a downstream gas opportunity” in partnership with Shoreline.