ACMAN canvasses policy measures to boost Nigeria’s economy

…flaws Russell FTSE’s downgrade of NSE index

The Association of Capital Market Academics of Nigeria (ACMAN) has canvassed sundry fiscal and monetary measures for implementation by the President Bola Tinubu-led administration in order to address the current whirlwinds in the economic space and position the nation’s economy on the path of sustainable growth.

The President of the association, Prof. Uche Uwaleke, who spoke at a media briefing in Abuja on ‘The Capital Market and President Tinubu’s First 100 Days in Office’, noted that most of the fiscal and monetary policy measures by the new administration were desirable for the economy but the implementation had been characterized by hardships with the attendant negative implications in the short term for the citizens’ socioeconomic wellbeing.

For instance, he expressed the association’s concern that the forex market had remained illiquid and volatility in exchange rates had also persisted despite the naira float policy that followed the unification of exchange rates even as the parallel premium continued to widen, thereby seemingly defeating one of the objectives of the naira float.

According to him, in view of the continued huge chunk of imports from China, the association advised the CBN to revisit the currency swap arrangement with China to a scale that reduces significantly the dependence on US dollars for imports from China.

The investment expert stressed that on the supply side, a lasting solution remains embarking on deliberate efforts to diversify the export base by the government giving support to the apex bank in the implementation of the RT 200 programme, especially in relation to port reforms while it works on the ease of doing business to pave way for increased foreign investments.

He expatiated: “We believe that unlocking value in dead assets is one way to improve the country’s fiscal liquidity. We encourage the new administration to speed up the process of privatizing government enterprises, including the NNPCL, not by selling to a few individuals or companies but through the capital market for transparency and inclusiveness as well as explore asset securitization as a means of financing developmental projects.

“ACMAN commends the administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for recognizing the capital market as a major pillar in its economic blueprint (as contained in the President’s Policy Advisory).

“In this regard, we recommend the setting up of a Capital Market Advisory Committee (CMAC) comprising capital market experts in the Industry and the Academia whose mandate will be to provide research-based advice to the Hon Minister of Finance on PPP arrangements and various financing opportunities in the capital market”, Uwaleke added.

The ACMAN also expressed its concern over the recent memo by FTSE Russell reclassifying the Nigerian stock market index from Frontier to Unclassified market status and described the firm’s latest exercise as premature for not giving sufficient time for the forex reforms introduced by the government to mature.

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