Page 1

, CAPITAL MARKET

Merger: Access Bank, Intercontinental sign MOU ccess Bank Pic and

of banking services to their

FG WOOS Chinese investors to agric, solid minerals sectors

Int ercont inenta l

considerable

Ra nke Badmus

Udem e Ekwere

the seamless continuation

A

Bank Pic have finall y signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the purpose of combining the business of both in stitutions .

Our correspondent gathered on Friday that the MoU was signed following the approval of the Board of Directors of the two banks. A joint press statement by the two banks. obtained by our correspond ent said. "The

business combination will offer unique opportunities

for both institutions . The retail banking operations of Intercontinental Bank coupled with the wholesale and

commercial

banking

strength of Access Bank offer a high degree of synergy and complementarities:

in the

Nigerian

unique

banking

environment.

··The synergy from combining the two banks \ \ "i!I

therefore

create

a

/orm idable competitor with scale /0 rival the top banks III

th e industry."

In signing the MoU . the two inslitutions agreed that their

business combination was o ! s}'stemic impor tance and \\ auld re sult in a significant

degree of capacity in the Nigerian banking sector that \\,:ould oth erwise have b~ell

10SI In the event of

non-re solution of any of the

re 5cued banks. Th e sta tement said. · ·Critica l l ~. th e tran saction provides a sa fe harbour

lor the depositors of Interco nti ne ntal Bank and

custom er

base . "It will also create a market platform from leading which the combined entity can capitalise on growth opportunities." It. however. added tha t the process would be subject to necessary shareholder, regulatory and judicial approvals in accordance with international best practices. Meanwhile. at the close of equity trading activities on Friday. Intercontinental Bank gained 1.3 per cent or two kobo to close at N1.48 per share. while Access Bank lost 2 .9 per cent to close at N8 .64 per share . United Bank for Africa Pic led 35 other stocks on the price losers chart, shedding five per cent to close at N8 :74 per share . Costain West Africa Pic fell by 4 .9 per cent or 28 kobo to close at N5 .39 per share. while GuarantyTrust Assurance Pic and Presco Pic lost 4 .8 per cent each to close at Nl. 75 and 6.42 per share in that order. On the other hand . Champion Brewerjes Pic gained 4 .83 per cent or 21 kobo to close at N4.56 per share. Union Bank of Nigeria Pic and Oando Pic a lso appreciated by 4.7 per cent each to close at N3 .50 and N62 per share . whil e Transnational Incorporated Pic was up by 4.4 per cent to close at 93 kobo per share .

HE Minister of State for Commerce and Industry. Ms. Josephine Tapgun, has urged Chinese investors from the Qinghai Province of China to invest in some key

T

sectors in Nigeria, including

agriculture, solid minerals and oil and gas, among others. According to a statement by the ministry on Wednesday, the minister gave the inilitation during a visit by delegates from Qinghai Province of the Peoples Republic of China, led by the Vice -Governor Mr. Wang Lingjun. in Abuja recently. Tapgun said that the Chinese investors had started exploring the country through their partnership with the Bauchi State government. especially in the areas of tourism. She. however. urged members of the delegation to visit other states in the country to tap into the abundant

resources

in

Nigeria. She added. "Nigeria has a lot of potential that needs to be tapped and the visitors can take advantage of, by investing in the various sectors of th e economy."

According to her. Nigeria has the capacity to export numerous

China. She

products

advised

to

Nigerian

entrepreneurs to partner Qinghai entrepreneurs

towards exploring opportun ities in

the both

countries.

"We will encourage our busi nessmen to visit Qinghai Province so that they can Champion N4.35 Union N3.34 Oando N59 .20 Transcorp NO .S9 Evans Nl.l4 First Alu mini um .- j\l0.69 BankPHB N1.44 Finbank NO .74 Tantalizer NO.52 Unity Nl.lO

Ope.ning

CI?sing

,

price N9 .20

price NS.75

Costain Gtassltre

N5 .67 N 1.84

N5 .39 NU5

Presco Nascon Capital Hote l

N6 .75 N5.9S N3.30

N6.42 N5.69 N3 .14

N1.67 N26.32

N1.59 N25.06

Ikeja Hotel Cadbury Japaul Wema

·t

....

N4 .56 N3.50 N62 .00 NO.93 Nl.l9 NO.72 N1.50 NO.77 NO .54 N1.l4

: UBA

. ~~

MONEY

SATURDAY PUNCH , March 26, 2011

Page 52

N1.6S N1.50

N1.60 N1.43

NO.21 NO.16 N2.S0 NO .04 NO .05 NO.03

4 .S3 4 .79 4 .73 4 .49 4.39 4.35 t'l006 4 .17 NO .03 4 .05 NO.02 3.35 NO.04 3.64

Loss NO.46 5 .00 NO.2S 4 .90 NO .09 4 .S9 NO.33 4 .S9 NO .29 4 .S5 NO.16 NO.OS

4 .S5 4 .79

N1.26 NO.OS NO.D7

4 .79 4 .76 4 .67

GTBank GDR (London Stock Exchange) Opening $7.00 Closing $7 .00 o Global Depository Receipt is a veoicle that enables investment in an offshore company.

explore the opportunities in

the province," she said. The minister recalled that China and Nigeria had been doing business together for a long time, and urged entrepreneurs from both countries "to discuss and cooperate in a win-win situation.··

Earlier. the leader of the delegation . Mr. Wang Lingjun. who is also the Vice -Governor of Qinghai Province . had pointed out that China and Nigeria were developing and making progress towards establishing a solid foundation for economic development.

He noted that the Qinghai market had great potential and vitality as well as other numerous investment

business and opportunities

ready to be unearthed. Lingjun called on the minister and entrepreneurs

Nigerian to visit

Qinghai Province to know more about the "western part of China." Tapgun noted recently that the oil and gas sector of the Nigerian economy had about 6.000 investment opportun ities.

Speaking while on a tour

of the Federal Government's capital projects under her ministry to ensure that they are executed to the letter, she said, "Oil and gas is not only a contributor to the GDP of the country but also a good employer of labour." She said that government would continue to support the Oil and Gas Free Zone

Authoril)l .to .ensure that the organisatign performed well adding that the first thing investors considered was the environment.

She also assu red that government wo uld always provide the enabling environment for in vestments

to

thrive ,

governm ent

noting was

that making

efforts

to

ensure

that

in vestors in th e sector paid

their taxes promptly to the authorities and the state governments.

Tapgun said that Federal Governmentwasdetermined to look inward and review the policy on importation to ensure that the Vision 2020 would not be an illusion .

oL-R: Public Relations Aduiser, BrandScopePR, Mr. Rasheed Bolarinwa; Managing Partner, Project People Limited, Mr. Adegoke Nathaniel; Director, Operations and Human Resources, Ms. 'Diekola Olu-Adegoke and Board Member, Mr. Olumide Omojuyigbe, during a news conference on the company's PRINCE2TM certification, in Lagos ... on Thursday

US investors pl~ce $1.2bn in Japanese equities E

VEN as the aftershocks from the earthquake pushed financia l markets sharply lower last week, Am erican investors poured

$1.2 bn into Japanese equity exchange-traded funds , or ETFs, according to new data. It was the biggest weekly inflow on record , a trend suggesting that some investors are already

betting that the crisis may be just an interruptio n to a market rally. On March 16 alone. five days a fter the earthquake a nd tsunami and as the nation's nuclear crisis was worsening, investors put

$700m into Japa nese ETF's, according to the data from TrimTabs, an investment research organisation. That was twice the previous largest daily inflow on record . in 2003 . The latest market trends

beyond Japan's crisis, calculating that it may have only a limited impact on the United States and the rest of the world, provided that the nuclear crisis does not significantly "Through the volatili ty, the story stays the same ,"

of inflows before the earthquake. ETFs, have become popular trading vehicles among shortterm traders, and the inflows have had more to do with speculative positioning rather than a vote of confidence in a rebound in the Japanese

economists

economy.

worsen.

at

Morgan

Stanley concluded in a research report published on Wednesday. In the report. the econom ists estimated that although the earthquake and its aftermath might push Japan back into recession

this year. it wo uld shave a fraction of a percentage point off global growth this year. "Tho ugh not trivial. this shouldn' t derail the relatively robust global recovery," the report concluded. The latest data from TrimTabs is based on

show that in vestors are

inflows

cautiously stepping back into stocks. Markets in the United States rose this wee k as worries ab'out the situation at the Fukushima nuclear plant subsided somewhat. The Standard & Poor's SOO-stock index has rallied back to just 0 .8 per cent below the highest point on March 11. According to the New York TImes,marke t strategists are also looking

Japanese equ ity ETFs. which are similar to mutual funds but trade like a stock on public excha nges. The biggest of these funds is offered by BlackRock's iShares unit and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange . began Investments to flow into Japanese ETFs. in December, and there had been three consecu tive months

into

seven

After the earthquake. inves tors waited for two

tradingdaysbeforeacting. But on Wednesday. March 16, after stocks in Tokyo fell by about 10 per cenl. investors in the United States responded by moving heavily into ETFs. One reason may be that J apanese stocks still have far to go in the ir recovery. Though the Nikkei 22S index in Tokyo has bounced back from recent lows. it is stifl

down 9 .43 per cent since before the earthquake. Minyi Chen . Asia equi ty analyst at Trim Tabs, said that the latest purchases were driven by retail investors

spotting a long-term buying opportunity. rather than by short-term traders. "Buyers began to emerge almost he immediately. said . "Extremely low valuations brought in bargain shoppers.

THE PUNCH, 26 MARCH, 2011  

FG WOOS Chinese investors to agric, solid minerals sectors

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