[Nigeria Business Week] Andrea Ayemoba: Crude industry facts underlining the Nigerian economy
The Nigerian stock market indicators have shown lately a typical pattern in stock markets – investors stay loyal to the resilient stocks. Telecom and banking are the two industries in Nigeria that manage to stay afloat and quickly bounce back from economic setbacks. A telecom giant this week has caused an appreciation in stocks performance thanks to the overall confidence investors maintain in their shares. The same happened with a premium Nigerian bank, increased interest in the banks shares resulting in an overall rebound of Nigerian stocks on the market, an outcome enjoyed by a global beverage conglomerate that saw an hike in its market value north of two million Naira.
Other developments in Banking and Energy include new appointments in leadership. Access Bank named a new CEO and in a novel move, the board of the Eko Electricity Distribution company named its first female Managing Director.
As for the Import/Export and Trade businesses, a bit of activity can be expected there in days to come. The Federal Government is planning increased palm oil production to meet new export targets and in the ports, clearing agents are planning strikes in pursuit of demands related to vehicle imports. Despite these conflicting developments, data just released by the Statistics Bureau indicate increased commerce in 2021, as shown in higher VAT collections.
Speaking of conflicting developments, several fun facts have been dropped into our laps this week.
International bodies have opinions on the current and possible future economic position of Nigeria.
The World Bank has predicted what poverty in Nigeria will look like by year end and the IMF, obviously sharing this opinion in part, has fingered an untapped potential that can be explored.
The Central Bank has not been idle in striving to improve economic conditions, having reportedly disbursed trillions of Naira to revive the economy since hit by Covid-19.
In 2021, Nigeria spent 10% more in domestic debt service than it did in 2020.
According to estimates made, Nigeria (and other African countries) pays the highest rates in the world for mobile internet in proportion to income.
Nigerians spend an enormous amount of money on foreign education and medical tourism on an annual basis.
Now to statistics of the current day, fuel scarcity is driving food prices up in the capital, Abuja, and indeed all over the country. Cooking gas is also north bound, hitting its highest peak in over three years, a fact marketers of the product blame on global crude oil prices.
What to make of these facts. Nigeria, like any other developing economy, is very much a work-in-progress, and the work is getting done. Efficiently and effectively? Perhaps not always, but it is being done.