In its effort to boost innovation in the banking industry, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has issued the regulatory framework for Open Banking in Nigeria. Open banking is a practice whereby third-party financial service providers are given access to customer banking, transaction, and other financial data which is expected to drive competition and enhance access to banking and payments services. The guidelines are contained in a document titled “Operational Guidelines For Open Banking In Nigeria”.
The crypto market especially bitcoin has continued to plummet for the last four days and has now fallen below $31k, its lowest since July 2021. El Salvador, popularly known as the Bitcoin nation has now utilised the current bear of the crypto market and bought 500 Bitcoin at an average price of $30,744 each.
The Central Bank of Nigeria has imposed an N800 million fine on three commercial banks for failing to comply with regulations barring customers from transacting in cryptocurrencies. The affected banks include Access Bank, United Bank of Africa, and Stanbic IBTC Bank. According to a Bloomberg report, the sanctions are part of efforts by the apex bank to ensure banks adhere to restrictions on cryptocurrency transactions.
The volatility of the crypto market and its popularity have pushed the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to set New rules (drafts) for the virtual assets service providers (VASPs). Although the market at the moment is bearish weeks after experiencing a sharp selloff, driven by a strong dollar that has reached new highs in two decades, resulting in cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin and Ethereum breaking their key support levels of $40K and 3K respectively.
The World Bank has on Wednesday announced the sanctioning of SoftTech IT Solutions and Services Ltd. (SoftTech), a Nigerian Information Technology Solution company, and its Managing Director, Isah Kantigi for alleged corrupt practices in the National Social Safety Nets Project. The global financial institution suspended SoftTech for 50 months, while the MD got 60 months of debarment. In a statement titled "World Bank Group debars SoftTech IT Solutions and Services Ltd. And its Managing Director" on the bank's website, the bank said the firm and its MD were sanctioned for making improper payments to certain project officials.
Flour Mills of Nigeria plc (FMN) has obtained all required regulatory approvals from the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), and the Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria (SEC) to acquire a 71.69 per cent stake in Honeywell Flour Mills Plc (HFMP), formerly a portfolio company of Honeywell Group, as well as a 5.06% stake in HFMP held by First Bank of Nigeria Limited.
The Federal Government has engaged a British firm to revive the Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited “for free”. The Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Arc Olamilekan Adegbite, who made this disclosure while responding to questions from State House reporters at the Special Weekly Briefing coordinated by the Presidential Communications Team in Abuja, stated that the decision was taken after the outbreak of war between Russian and Ukraine. The minister noted that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had earlier released the sum of $2b in 2020 to revive the project under an arrangement with a firm comprising both Russians and Ukrainians.
The Central African Republic (CAR) has legalized the use of cryptocurrencies in the financial markets after being approved by the country's lawmakers. Four (4) days after the cryptocurrency bill was introduced by the Minister of Digital Economy, Post and Telecommunications, Justin Gourna Zacko, parliament unanimously approved it amidst protest from the opposition.
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the reappointment of Mr. Olukayode Pitan as the Managing Director (MD)/ Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Bank of Industry (BoI) for another term of five years. Mallam Aliyu Dikko was also reappointed as the chairman of BoI. This was disclosed in a statement signed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. Boss Mustapha who stated that the new appointments would take effect from May 27, 2022.
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the reconstitution of the Board of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN). The Senior Special Assistant to the President on, Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in a statement issued Thursday, said the approval was given with a view to repositioning the bank as a core banking institution with core competence in mortgage finance.
Air Peace began direct flights into Niamey on Friday. Mr Stanley Olisa, the airline’s spokesman, stated in Lagos on Saturday that the inaugural flight was conducted with one of the airline’s Embraer 145 jets, from its subsidiary, Air Peace Hopper. He quoted the leader of the Air Peace delegation on the flight, Capt. Augustine Kamano, as saying that Niamey had always been on the airline’s radar. This is especially as the airline was poised to expand its footprints across the West African coast and interconnect different cities in the sub-region.