By Christiana Ekpa Abuja
The Vice President Yemi Osinbajo yesterday reassured investors of the present administration’s commitment towards continued implementation of strategies and policies aimed at achieving economic development.
The initiatives includes: Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), unprecedented investments in capital projects in the past three years, tax incentives and the Ease of Doing Business.
In the Vice President words, these strategies and policies are aimed at attracting “investors into various sectors of the Nigerian economy with the aim of growing and diversifying the economy, creating jobs and improving the quality of life, just as he underscored the importance of Nigerian capital market in the attainment of these objectives.
Osinbajo was represented by Patience Oniha, Director General, Debt Management Office disclosed this in Abuja at the 2nd capital market stakeholders’ forum organised by Senate and House of Representatives Committees on capital market and institutions in collaboration with Securities and Exchange Commission and other stakeholders.
“Financial markets are known to be engines of growth because of the strategic role they play in the flow of funds to businesses and governments. There is extensive literature on the fact that there is a strong positive correlation between the level of development of the financial system and economic development, for the simple reason that financial markets act as intermediaries between lenders and borrowers.
“While this correlation is certainly the case for the advanced market economies, the same cannot be said for Nigerian capital market in the areas of legislations, regulations, technology and be products amongst others which have attracted local and foreign investors to the market and I would like to commend the regulators and operators alike for
“There is however, room for innovation, increased depth and efficiency of the capital market and this represents an opportune time for these to begin to occur in anticipation of increased and more sophisticated demand for capital market products,” Osinbajo noted.
He also tasked the stakeholders to come up with various innovations that will provide opportunities for wall and medium scale businesses to access required funds for growth.
“Whilst deliberating on big businesses, I hope that creative ways for enabling small and medium businesses to access capital will also be considered as they have a great potential for growth, job creation and effective source of local resources.”
Osinbajo also tasked private sector to “take advantage of the government incentives and improved business environment, given the large and diverse resource base of Nigeria including its entrepreneurial human resources and the demand for capital will increase perhaps, well beyond the current levels.”
He expressed optimism that the forum on how the Nigerian capital market can become a reliable source of large pools of stable funds that can be readily assessed by local and international institutions seeking to do business in Nigeria, is highly commendable.
In his remarks, Speaker Yakubu Dogara who reiterated the commitment of the 8th Assembly and development of the capital market, disclosed that
National Assembly has so far delivered some of the legislative actions enunciated in the communique issued at the maiden capital market stakeholders’ forum held in June, 2016.
Dogara who was represented by Pally Iriase, Majority Deputy Chief Whip, said: “it is instructive to note that the National Assembly has recorded relevant milestones that is expected to drive the operations of Nigeria’s capital market.
“These include: passage of demutualisation bill, ongoing amendment of CAMA Act, public hearing held on the amendment of relevant sections of Investment and Securities Act, 2007; review of the Warehouse receipts and other related bills; arbitration and conciliation bill; ports and harbour bill; Nigerian Roads Fund bill; CISI bill; Railway bill; legislative intervention through public hearings on ‘downward tree of the capital market’, bonds, securities and private placement and other related bill are at advanced stages of legislative action.