The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) on Friday announced the disbursement of $200m to Zenith Bank Plc Nigeria to enable it maintain foreign currency trade flows impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The money is captured under Afreximbank’s Pandemic Trade Impact Mitigation Facility (PATIMFA), a statement said on Friday.
Afreximbank says the fund will also allow Zenith Bank to on-lend to eligible sub-borrowers involved in the manufacture and supply of medical resources needed to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking on the facility, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive of Zenith Bank, Mr Ebenezer Onyeagwu, said the facility showed the confidence reposed in Zenith Bank.
“The Afreximbank facility undoubtedly underscores the confidence reposed in Zenith Bank, and it will enable the bank to contribute to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic by providing trade finance and foreign currency funding for the importation of urgent medical equipment and raw materials.”
In his remarks, Prof. Benedict Oramah, President of Afreximbank, said the facility is part of the regional bank’s contribution to making sure that “African countries and institutions build back better from the shocks of the pandemic.”
“The Pandemic Trade Impact Mitigation Facility (PATIMFA) is designed to support and stabilize the foreign exchange resources of African countries, enabling them to support critical imports under emergency conditions,” he said.
“We are pleased to contribute to keeping economies going especially during this pandemic. The role that banks such as Zenith Bank play in Africa is huge. Supporting them to carry out their mandate is our greatest contribution to making sure that African countries and institutions build back better from the shocks of the pandemic.”
PATIMFA was set up in March 2020 to provide financing to assist Afreximbank member countries to adjust in an orderly manner to the financial, economic and health services shocks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This 3-year medium-term facility has been availed through direct funding. Afreximbank has already disbursed more than US$3.5 billion under PATIMFA. In addition, the Bank provided a grant of US$3 million towards the COVID-19 Special Fund set up by the African Union as well as to the African Center for Disease Control and other agencies.
Afreximbank has a history of providing support to African economies in times of economic crisis. During the 2015 economic crisis, it introduced a Counter-Cyclical Trade Liquidity Facility under which it disbursed more than $10 billion on a revolving basis to enable member countries to adjust to the adverse economic shocks. That facility helped key African economies to manage that crisis and recover swiftly.
Food Prices In Nigeria Went Up In September – Nigeria Bureau of Statistics
Food prices in Nigeria increased in September according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
NBS made the assertion in a report titled ‘Selected food price watch data’ for the month of September 2020.
The report said the average price of one dozen of eggs medium size increased year-on-year by 5.245% and month-on-month by 0.37% to N480.76 in September 2020 from N478.97 in August 2020.
It stated that the average price of eggs medium size (price of one) increased year-on-year by 3.87 % and month-on-month by 0.28 % to N42.90 in September from N42.78 in August.
The average price of 1kg of rice (imported high quality sold loose) increased year-on-year by 39.07% and month-on-month by 2.87% to N516.13 in September 2020 from N501.71 in August.
Meanwhile, the average price of 1kg of tomato increased year-on-year by 26.12% and decreased month-on-month by -1.01% to N286.92 in September from N289.86 in August.
Similarly, it added, the average price of 1kg of yam tuber increased year-on-year by 29.11% and decreased month on month by -4.08% to N245.62 in September 2020 from N256.06 in August 2020.
Incidentally, as the 24hour curfew across many states in Nigeria last, after the resent spat of violent attacks in some cities it has impacted on current prices. And cause more increase. Now, a piece of egg now sells for N70 to N100 each.
The prices of other food items have increased and could further spiked if movement restrictions are not relaxed very soon.
Tunisia Exports 3,000 Tonnes Of Fruit To Libya In 20 Days
Tunisa exported no fewer than 3,000 tonnes of fruit to Libya in the first 20 days of October, local media reported.
The exports were through the three commercial Sfax, Sousse and Bizerte maritime lines.
The head of the Sales Department of the Inter-Professional Fruit Group (GIFruits), Tarek Tira, said the fruit export process, mainly for pomegranates, resumed its regular pace despite the closure of the road linking Tunisia with the Libyan land border since last September.
He said a cargo-carrying more than 1200 tonnes of fruit, including 700 tonnes of pomegranates, left Sfax port on Thursday to Tripoli.
Adding that another ship carrying nearly 350 tonnes of fruit will also sail for Libya from the same port.
Tira pointed out that the Libyan market is the first in Tunisia in terms of fruit marketing (more than 30%).
Since September, the export of Tunisian agricultural products, essentially fruits, has been experiencing a blockage, following the closure of the border road at Ben Guerdane by demonstrators. This has hindered the passage of Tunisian and Libyan trucks in both directions.
Vice-president of the board of directors of GIFruits Ibrahim Trabelsi expressed regret, considering the importance of the Libyan market. “It absorbs between 30 and 50% of agricultural products,” he said, adding the current situation could collapse the Tunisian fruit industry.
UACN Tops Gainers’ Table As Nigeria’s Bourse Rebounds By N59M
The Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE), on Thursday, rebounded with a growth of N59 billion in spite of social unrest and curfew in major cities of the country.
Specifically, the market capitalisation which opened at N14.870 trillion rose by N59 billion or 0.40 per cent to close at N14.929 trillion.
Also, the All-Share Index increased by 114.38 points or 0.40 per cent to close at 28,563.87 compared with 28,449.49 achieved on Wednesday.
The upturn was impacted by gains recorded in large and medium capitalised stocks, amongst which are; MTN Nigeria Communications, Stanbic IBTC Holdings, UACN, Lafarge Africa and Dangote Sugar Refinery.
Market sentiment measured by the market breadth was positive with 21 stocks gainers against 12 losers.
UACN drove the gainers’ table in percentage table, growing by 8.33 per cent to close at N7.15 per share.
Union Diagnostic followed with eight per cent to close at 27k, while FCMB Group rose by 7.96 per cent to close at N2.44 per share.
United Capital increased by 6.44 per cent to close at N3.80, while Neimeth appreciated by 5.26 per cent to close at N1.80 per share.
Conversely, Wapic Insurance led the losers’ chart in percentage terms dropping by 9.09 per cent to close at 40k per share.
UACN Property Development trailed with 3.66 per cent to close at 79k, while GlaxoSmithKline shed 3.57 per cent to close at N5.40 per share.
International Breweries dipped 2.95 per cent to close at N6.25, while Fidelity Bank depreciated by 2.50 per cent to close at N1.95 per share.
However, the total volume traded decreased by 4.67 per cent with an exchange of 311.33 million shares worth N4.69 billion traded in 3,375 deals.
This was in contrast with a total of 326.58 million shares valued at N4.22 billion transacted in 4,367 deals on Wednesday.
Transactions in the shares of Guaranty Trust Bank topped the activity chart with 77.84 million shares worth N2.34 billion.
Access Bank followed with 57.66 million shares valued at N442.78 million, while Zenith Bank traded 39.58 million shares worth N813.77 million.
FBN Holdings sold 21.75 million shares valued at N131.58 million, while United Bank for Africa transacted 18.16 million shares worth N122.81 million
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