23 February 2013

Nigeria: Economic Reforms Yielding Results - Stanbic IBTC Chief

Nigeria's quest for economic development in the last 12 months has paid off in the power sector, the capital market, ports, agriculture and foreign direct investments, chairman of Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc, Mr. Atedo Peterside, has said.

He said the economy had reached a threshold where the country would accelerate the realisation of its vast economic potential and deliver growth on a sustainable basis.

Speaking at the 2013 Standard Bank West Africa Investors' Conference in Lagos on Tuesday, Peterside, who is also Chairman of the Technical Committee of the National Council on Privatization, said Nigeria's economic fundamentals are getting stronger every day.

This, he said, is pivotal in helping investors to leverage the attractive investment opportunities that exist in the country and to derive optimal value from such investments. "We all know that a tipping point only becomes unmistakably clear after the fact when one has joined the ranks of those who are left to ponder how they could possibly have missed out," Peterside stated.

The conference, the 4th in the series, had the theme, "Nigeria: Enabling the next level", and had over 200 participants from local and international fund management companies as well as blue chip companies from Nigeria and other markets.

With respect to the power sector, Peterside disclosed that preferred bidders for 10 out of the 11 distribution companies and four out of the five generation companies slated for privatization have been selected. "We also have a contract in place for the private sector management of Nigeria's transmission network by a world class operator (Manitoba Hydro International of Canada)," he added.

On the Nigerian capital market, he noted that there has been a doubling of the daily trading band, while the introduction of market-making initiative has helped to boost liquidity in the equities market. Going forward, Peterside said all stakeholders should look beyond the broad themes and focus increasingly on the details of execution.

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