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Heritage Bank MD, Sekibo calls for innovation to boost agric development

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Managing Director/Chief Executive, Heritage Bank Limited, Mr. Ifie Sekibo has called for innovation in the agricultural sector in order to maximise the sector’s contributions to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Sekibo made this call while speaking to a group of investors stressing that innovation is necessary to tackle the challenges to productivity in the agricultural sector.

Speaking on the challenges and potentials of Nigeria’s agricultural sector, he said: “Statistically, we are about 198 million people as nation though we believe we are about 210 million, GDP growth 1.5 percent, before recession, we are doing about 6 percent and we are at 11.28 percent inflation but still hoping it comes down. Agriculture is 22.86 percent, Industry 23.18percent and services at 53.97 percent. Essentially, we will say our economy is driven by services.

“Nigeria has a very large market, plenty labour force, plenty of waterways because almost every part of Nigeria has waterways and enough land to feed ourselves and nearly half the world because we truly have a land fertile for Agriculture and we have only utilized 40 percent of which we waste about 70 percent of the lands.

“For rice, Nigeria should be producing about 6.3 metric tonnes and one begin to wonder why we are poor as a nation if we have such opportunities. Instead we are doing about 2.3 metric tonnes and you can see the gap of about 4 million metric tonnes that we could have produced but we are importing.

“That is a negative for our economy. A lot of other gaps in the Agricultural sector shows that indeed we have a lot of room for investments. You will realize that every state of this federation and every Geo-political zones has a lot to offer, the North-West, North-East is a hub for agriculture only if we do the right thing and maximize the opportunities.

The South, we can spoon the world in the South only if we maximize the opportunities that abound in the zone.
“So why are we not making progress as a nation especially in the areas of Agriculture? They are due to some few challenges which include our import supplies, production, processing and basically trade which are components of Agriculture.

“The vulnerability shocks we have out there can be dealt with if we put in place innovations platform, strategies and the likely outcomes. These are essentially what we need to do. If we can achieve some of these innovations in Agriculture, we will turn our country around.

We need to look at the issue of climate change; we need to look at why we have been unable to create inventions and innovations that make our work in the Agricultural space.”

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BUSINESS

NNPC to partner Indonesia State Oil Company, Pertamina, on crude oil sales

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NNPC GMD, Mallam Mele Kyari, presenting a souvenir to the Indonesian Ambassador to Nigeria during a courtesy visit to the NNPC Towers…Tuesday.

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has indicated interest in working with the Indonesian national oil company, Pertamina, to improve on the volume of crude oil export.
Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari, disclosed this today while receiving the Indonesian Ambassador to Nigeria, His Excellency, Dr. Usra Hendra Harahap, at the NNPC Towers, Abuja.

A press release by the corporation’s Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, stated that partnership with Pertamina could open up more opportunities for the nation’s crude oil and gas in the face of unpredictable global market.

Mele Kyari said that NNPC was ready to renew the trade contract with the Republic of Indonesia which expired last year and directed the relevant arms of the corporation to work out modalities to ensure a better deal for the benefit of both countries.

Earlier in his presentation, the Indonesian Ambassador, His Excellency, Dr. Usra Hendra Harahap, noted that Indonesia has a long history of mutual relationship with Nigeria and was ready to improve on its $2.5 billion trade balance with Nigeria.

“Last year alone, Indonesia imported from Nigeria crude oil worth about $2.5 billion; but that contract ended in December, 2018”, adding that crude oil from Nigeria was considered to be of very high quality and environmentally friendly.

The Ambassador expressed confidence in the capacity of the NNPC new GMD to deliver on his mandate as the leader of the oil and gas industry in Nigeria.

“The new NNPC boss is very experienced. I read his curriculum vitae and I found it very wonderful. Nobody can cheat him because he grew through the ranks to the top. I think NNPC will be very strong by his leadership qualities”, the diplomat concluded.

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BUSINESS

NNPC posts N6.33bn profit in one month

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation on Sunday announced a trading surplus of N6.33bn for the month of May, a figure which is 13 per cent higher than the N5.6bn surplus posted in the preceding month of April.

Details of the corporation’s performance contained in the May edition of its Monthly Financial and Operations Report attributed the marginal rise to the increase in gas and power output in contrast to the figure for the preceding month.

The report, which was made public by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, NNPC, Ndu Ughamadu, also attributed the result to the surplus recorded by the corporation’s downstream entities.

The report further indicated that within the period, the corporation recorded a total of $580.32m in export sale of crude oil and gas, which was 23.39 per cent higher than the previous month’s figure.

Out of this number, crude oil export sales contributed $458.59m, which translated to 79.02 per cent of the entire dollar transactions, compared with the $342.11m that was contributed in the previous month.

The report showed that between May 2018 and May 2019, crude oil and gas worth $5.97bn was exported.

In the downstream, to ensure uninterrupted supply and effective distribution of petrol across the country, a total of 2.06b billion litres of petrol translating to 66.49 million litres per day were supplied in the month of May 2019.

NNPC stated that beyond supply, it had continued to diligently monitor the daily stock of petrol to achieve smooth distribution of petroleum products and zero fuel queue across the country.

Within the period, a total of 60 pipeline points were vandalised, representing a remarkable 52 per cent decrease from the 125 points vandalised in April 2019.

The Atlas Cove-Mosimi and Ibadan-Ilorin pipelines accounted for 38 per cent and 23 per cent, respectively and other locations accounted for the remaining 39 per cent of the total breaks.

The report noted that the feat was due to efforts by NNPC in collaboration with the local communities and other stakeholders to continuously strive to reduce and eventually eliminate pipeline vandalism.

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Zenith Bank unveils ‘Style by Zenith 2.0’

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Following the success of the maiden edition, foremost multinational financial services provider, Zenith Bank Plc has announced the launch of “Style by Zenith 2.0”, the second edition of its flagship lifestyle fair dedicated to intentionally celebrating the ‘small’ things that make ‘big’ differences in our lives.

First launched in 2018, the “Style by Zenith 2.0” initiative was created with the objective of supporting and creating value for customers by focusing on various aspects of their lifestyle.
This year, “Style by Zenith 2.0” takes things up a notch with the theme, “Style the Life you Desire”, aimed at encouraging Nigerians to live their best lives and be extraordinary.

The platform seeks to inspire people to be authentic, while showing them that with ordinary talent and extraordinary effort they can thrive and make a real change in this world.

Speaking on the rationale behind “Style by Zenith 2.0”, the Executive Director of Zenith Bank Plc., Dr. Temitope Fasoranti said that, “Banking, for Zenith Bank means going that extra mile to be present in the lives of our customers.

Driven by a culture of excellence and providing cutting edge solutions, the bank is championing this cause to enable individuals and businesses to grow wealth.”

He added that “Beyond providing financial solutions, Zenith Bank Plc seeks to be a reliable partner to her customers, ensuring that they excel on every front. With “Style by Zenith 2.0”, the bank continues in her commitment to empowering individuals and entrepreneurs by celebrating real talents. We will be helping people do what they know how to do best and repositioning them for greater levels of success in their various endeavours.”

This year’s program includes an interesting line up of activities all culminating in the 3-day Lifestyle Fair taking place at the end of 2019. Kicking off the array of activities is the “Style by Zenith 2.0” Fitness Walks being held in conjunction with Mass Medical Missions, a non-profit organization, and Venus Medicare Ltd, a leading Health Management Organisation in the country.

The Fitness Walk will serve as a platform to promote Mission Pink Cruise – a project of Mass Medical Missions supported by Zenith Bank, aimed at taking holistic cancer prevention and health promotion to various communities across the country using Mobile Cancer Centres (MCC) nicknamed Pink Cruises, which is the first of its kind in Nigeria.

Scheduled to hold in August, these Fitness Walks and Cancer Screening exercises will hold in five cities across Nigeria – Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Kano and Onitsha. Interested individuals are invited to register their participation by visiting the Zenith Bank website at www.zenithbank.com/style.

Aside the fitness walks across the country, there is a whole lot of activities such as conferences, online engagements, and a special event for models that builds on the masterclass held last year, not forgetting the special play arcade and activities designed for children at the fair. The whole gamut of events and activities lined up also come with free medical check-ups like free eye, dental and cancer tests, amongst other special promotions both online and at the events leading to the final crescendo which is the 3-Day Lifestyle Fair.

With initiatives such as these and many more to come, “Style by Zenith 2.0” promises to offer an all-encompassing experience touching on key aspects of the lifestyle of Zenith customers and the public.

The “Style by Zenith 2.0” platform is also a testament to the priority given to SMEs and the retail segment of the market by the bank. Together with her various partners, Zenith Bank will be laying the foundation for a future where individuals and SMEs can live up to their full potentials.

Fashion One, the leading global fashion and lifestyle channel will once again be working with Zenith Bank on the “Style by Zenith 2.0” initiative.

Established in 1990, Zenith Bank Plc is a leading multinational bank providing corporate, business, retail and personal banking services through its network of over 500 branches and business offices, serving millions of customers. The brand is verifiably a leader in the deployment of various channels of banking technology and has become synonymous with the deployment of state-of-the-art technologies in banking.

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