30 November 2012

Nigeria: SEC to Spend N93 Million to Compile Investors' Data

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is to spend N93 million on a comprehensive compilation of data on investors in 2013, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

Part of the N93 million will also go for a nationwide awareness campaign on the dematerialisation policy.

A source close to the SEC Committee on Dematerialisation disclosed this to NAN in Lagos yesterday.

He said that the aim was to facilitate the execution of the dematerialisation policy.

The source said that the data was needed to identify the real owners of the 60 per cent share certificates in the capital market.

NAN gathered that the awareness campaign would begin in January in all parts of the country.

The source said that the initial cost proposed by the committee was N177 million, but it was reviewed downward in line with current realities.

The source said that the committee had met with the Central Securities and Clearing System (CSCS) on the data compilation to facilitate the implementation.

Dematerialisaiton is the elimination of physical certificates or documents through conversion to electronic ownership mode domiciled with the CSCS.

NAN recalls that Ms Arunma Oteh, the SEC Director-General, said that some shareholders were resisting dematerialisation policy due to lack of knowledge on its benefits.

Oteh said at the just concluded 2nd annual capital market committee retreat in Warri, Delta, that asset transfer from one investor to the other was much easier in a dematerialised market.

The director-general said that SEC would employ road shows to sensitise Nigerians on the benefits.

"The starting point is publicity before we will focus on the technology issue," Oteh said.

Also in Warri, Mr Bukar Kyari, the Chief Executive Officer of CSCS, said about 60 per cent of shares in the market were still in certificate format.

Kyari that the stakeholders needed to identify the real owners of the 60 per cent undematerialised shares before the full commencement of the policy.

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