Stockbrokers chart way out of recession at 9th investiture

The President of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS), Mr Oluseyi Abe, on Wednesday said the nation’s capital market can provide the needed capital that can take the country out of the current economic recession.

Speaking at his investiture ceremony in Lagos, Abe said the capital market has the potential to fund economic activities, noting that what is needed is the right policies and products that attract investors who can provide the funds.

According to him, with a vibrant capital market, the federal government does not need to sell assets or borrow externally to fund the budget deficit.

He said although the government is yet to bring out the names of assets that would sold, he noted that caution should be applied.

“I believe there is nothing wrong if the government plans to sell assets that are not performing optimally. But caution should be applied in taking this decision,” Abe said.

However, the CIS boss noted that market still has the potential to provide the funding needs of government at all levels.

“The capital market can provide funds for the government and corporates. It has been doing so in the past and I believe the market has the potential to provide what funding needs of government and corporate bodies. What we need is products that will attract the capital from investors both domestically and foreign,” Abe said.

He emphasised that the capital market plays a vital role of mobilising funds from the surplus economic unit to the deficit for development, while noting that the CIS would collaborate with relevant government agencies to deepen the market it more attractive, noting that advocacy will be top on the agenda of the institute.

He added that he will work with stakeholders in the capital and stockbroking community to ensure that stockbrokers take their right place in the economic development and growth of the country.

Abe explained that stockbrokers, who are also trained as investment advisers will be encouraged to work with government at various levels as consultants and advisers as part of efforts to look for solutions that will take the nation from the current challenging times.

In his goodwill message, the Director General of the Securities and Exchange (SEC), Mounir Gwarzo, urged CIS members to maintain the high level of compliance with the laws and rules guiding capital market operations.

Executive Vice Chairman, Alpha African Advisory, Mr Mustapha Chike Obi, who spoke on the theme “Growth, The only Nigerian Imperative,” urged the nation’s economic team to focus on infrastructure development as the way forward out of poverty.

In his remarks, he outlined “Economic growth as the way out of poverty. The degree of Nigeria’s GDP growth, especially over the last decade, has not translated into accelerated employment and reduction in poverty among its citizens compared to several other countries.”

He advised the economic team on the need to create an enabling environment to stimulate the growth, expressing dismay at Nigeria’s poverty rate which has remained unchanged for the past 30 years. He cited that China’s poverty rate has dropped 77 per cent, and noted that the countries that have been successful in reducing their poverty head count have invested heavily in infrastructure over the past 20 years.

Chike said that Nigeria in 10 years has invested only 10 per cent of its GDP on Infrastructure, adding that “There is a positive correlation between poverty reduction and infrastructure investment. It is imperative for Nigeria to emulate the likes of Indonesia and India to achieve the required fixed capital formation levels in order to attain a significant reduction in poverty levels.

Nigeria’s GDP will have to grow faster than its 5 year historical growth rate of 5.7 per cent in order to significantly increase its GDP per capita ratio and to avoid falling further down the poverty ladder,” he added.

Former Vice President of Nigeria Atiku Abubakar also urged the Nigerian government to embrace diversification in a bid to further strengthen growth of the country’s economy.

According to him, the biggest problem Nigeria is saddled with is the addiction to oil revenue. Atiku, while giving his opening remarks at the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers Investiture Ceremony argued that the most valuable resource as a nation is not our oil, but the people. “Diversification has to become a must, in 1980 Agriculture contributed 15 per cent of our GPA” he said.

The Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS), the regulatory body for the practice of stockbroking in Nigeria, held the investiture ceremony to inaugurate its new president and chairman of council with a strategic review of the roadmap for the Nigeria’s economic transformation.

The investiture of the new president of the institute, Mr Oluwaseyi Abe, attracted top government functionaries such as Former Lagos State Governor, Senator Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and Former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, seasoned technocrats, frontline stockbrokers and national opinion leaders were also present.