Abuja: Standard & Poor's upgraded Nigeria's credit rating on Wednesday because of improved financial stability and optimism over reforms to the banking and electricity sectors. Nigeria is among the world's top 10 crude oil exporters and a key supplier to the United States, China and India. It is Africa's second-largest economy after South Africa. GDP growth is projected at around 6.5 percent this year, down from 7.4 last year due to the impact of insecurity and the economic slowdown in countries importing Nigeria's oil. The ratings agency raised its long-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit rating to BB- with a stable outlook, three notches below investment grade, from B+. This brings its view in line with Fitch's rating.
Lagos: Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Olugbenga Ashiru, said Wednesday that Nigeria and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) will intervene in Mali because of the security challenge arising from the Boko Haram insurgency. He also said there was no going back in implementing the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2071 for military and other intervention and assistance to Mali. Ashiru made the disclosures on the current situation in the Sahel and West Africa in a paper presented at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Lagos. In the paper, the minister said Nigeria will however not accept the partition of Mali or imposition of an Islamic state.
Lagos: Former External Affairs Minister, General Ike Nwachukwu (rtd), yesterday, cautioned President Goodluck Johnathan against taking a hasty decision to deploy Nigerian troops to Mali as part of the multilateral military intervention force to rout the Al-Qaeda-backed Tuareg rebels that have taken the northern part of the Sahelian country. Nwachukwu, who was Nigeria's External Affairs minister during General Ibrahim Babangida's regime that sent troops to Liberia and Sierra Leone, under the auspices of the Economic Community of West Africa Monitoring Group (ECOMOG), to quell the civil wars in the two Mano River countries, said Nigeria should "make measured intervention in Mali" after carefully weighing the options and forces at play rather than adopting egoistic approach of being a big brother in the region.
Lagos: Following the security challenges in the country and its implications to the nation's economy, the Goods Made-in-China Importers Association (GMIA) has called for proper safety measures to protect the lives of Chinese nationals from terror attacks because of their contribution to the creation of over 35 million jobs in Nigeria. Secretary of the group, Chief Udoka Charles Udeogaranya, in a statement yesterday, said: "Though, Chinese nationals are not specifically targeted in the terror attack, President Goodluck Jonathan and the Federal Government should put up more efforts in safeguarding Chinese nationals in Nigeria."
Abuja: A four-day conference of African Commandants of military Command and Staff Colleges opened in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, Monday to work out possible areas of cooperation and prepare mid-level military officers to better confront the security challenges in Africa. Nigeria’s Acting Minister of Defence Olusola Obada formally opened the conference, which has in attendance Commandant of military training institutions from 12 African nations. They are Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Ethiopia, Egypt, Botswana, Benin Republic, Zambia, Uganda, South Africa, Libya and Namibia.
Abuja: Nigeria lost out on tens of billions of dollars in oil and gas revenues over the last decade from cut price deals struck between multinational oil companies and government officials, a confidential report seen by Reuters says. A team headed by the former head of the anti-corruption agency Nuhu Ribadu produced the 146-page study on an oil ministry request. It covers the year 2002 to the present.
Lagos: Nigeria and Korea have agreed on an industrial cooperation strategy that will promote the development of major industries, particularly the petrochemical and automotive industries, in both countries. The agreement was reached during a meeting between the Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga; and his counterpart, the Korean Minister of Knowledge Economy, Hong Suk-woo, at the Korea-Africa Industry Cooperation Forum in Seoul.
Lagos: China's unique engagement with Africa was raised a notch higher recently when the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC), the parent company of Shanghai Municipal Electricity Power Company, in collaboration with Nigeria's Amperion Power distribution Company Limited, bided successfully for the Geregu Power Generating Company in Kogi State. LOUIS ACHI looks at the game-changing scenario and its implications for the stable power supply.
The sixth Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG), released today, reveals that governance has improved in many African countries since 2000. However, it also reveals that some of Africa’s regional powerhouses – including Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa – have shown unfavourable governance performance since 2006. Over the past six years, all four countries have declined in two of the four main IIAG categories – Safety & Rule of Law and Participation & Human Rights.
Abuja: On October 1, Nigeria celebrated 52 years of political independence from Britain, but its oil and gas sector, like other aspects of the economy, is still dependent on multinational companies. The oil majors control about 95 percent of oil production in the country, taking away billions of dollars as return on investments to their home countries. The history of oil and gas exploration is older than the political independence of Nigeria. While Nigeria got her independence 52 years ago, crude oil was first discovered in 1956 and produced in February 1958 from the Oloibiri oil field, then in Rivers State.