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Amina Nuhu

Amina Nuhu

Millions of semi-formal small and micro-African businesses are to benefit from opportunities in the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) as MFS Africa, a digital payments network, has announced that it has joined the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System (PAPSS) network.

PAPSS is the newly established African cross-border and financial market infrastructure facilitating the payment, clearance and settlement for intra-African trade payments.

The synergy would enable MFS Africa to extend the reach of the PAPSS network to over 320 million mobile money and last mile users across 35 African markets, enabling borderless and seamless possibilities for transactions and trade.

Founder and CEO of MFS Africa, Dare Okoudjou, said borders do not limit Africans and that money should not be either.

No fewer than 2500 youth below 45 years, have been trained in the Business Repositioning Summit, held by Ultimate Destiny Uplifters Foundation, UDUF, in Onitsha.

The summit which held at C.J. Patterson Auditorium, All Saints Cathedral Onitsha Anambra State, entitled, Under 45 CEO’s Business Summit, in an initiative of UDUF, designed from the of its objective number four and to cushion the effect of COVID-19 on businesses.

UDUF objective number four among, other things, includes engaging and empowering individuals and families, particularly young business owners, entrepreneurship students and unemployed youths with resources to achieve their career goals.

In September 2021, Nairametrics reported that food processing startup, Tomato Jos, a private equity-backed, social enterprise agric company was awarded a N494 million grant by the USAID-funded West Africa Trade & Investment Hub (Trade Hub) to boost the productivity, income, and resilience of 4,000 maize and soybean smallholder farmers in northern Nigeria’s Kaduna State.

This came after a report in June citing Trade Hub’s investment in Thrive Agric, which saw the agritech startup grow on its commitment to strengthening agricultural value chains in the country, including for these three staple crops (rice, maize and soybean), with a Trade Hub backing of $1.75 million co-investment grant.

Also in June, Nairametrics reported a $1.4 million co-investment grant to OCP Africa Fertilizers Nigeria Limited (OCP Africa), a firm in the production of phosphate-based fertilizers, to install modern blending equipment within its fertilizer blending plant facility under construction in Kaduna.


Trade Hub’s Acting Chief of Party speaks

In an exclusive interview with Karl Littlejohn, Acting Chief of Party for the West Africa Trade & Investment Hub, he tells Nairametrics that 2021 has definitely had the highest number of investments, as nearly all of its 38 co-investment partnerships were signed this year.

The investment firm says it looks for investments in a broad range of fields including agriculture, financial services, healthcare, apparel, logistics, and even ecotourism and water or sanitation.

Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah, has said the Federal government is committed to economic prosperity and the ease of doing business in the country.

Enelamah, who spoke at the advocacy roundtable forum organised by the Institute of Directors Nigeria (IoD), in Lagos, said some reforms have already been completed.

This would ensure that Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) build capacity to deliver the ease of doing business, with effective collaboration that would support continuous improvement.

As Nigerians agonize under the heavy burden of high cost of food, the African Agricultural Technology Foundation, AATF,  yesterday, disclosed that farmers in Nigeria, Uganda and Zambia have benefited from its mechanized 65, 300 hectares of land in five years.

This was made known by the Executive Director, AATF, Dr Canisius Kanangire, in a presentation at the 2021 Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network, FANRPAN, Policy Dialogue held in Nairobi, Kenya, entitled: Technologies to Improve Supply of Diverse, Safe and Nutritious Food across the Value Chains.

According to Kanangire farmers who embraced mechanization of agricultural activities on their farms under its Cassava Mechanization and Agro-Processing Project, CAMAP, up-scaled their harvests from seven to nine metric tonnes per hectare to over 25 metric tonnes per hectare, which is an increase of over 200 per cent. 

He also made it known that following increased harvest there is also increased profit running into five-fold- $350 per ha to over $1,800 per hectares based on quality tubers, increased yields coupled with better market linkages.

Vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, has revealed that, under the Social Housing Scheme of the Economic Sustainability Plan(ESP), thousands of jobs have been created with the use of local building materials in the country.

The vice president disclosed this last week, at the two-day Mid-Term Ministerial Performance Review retreat, presided over by president Muhammadu Buhari, where the vice president delivered the progress report on the ESP implementation.

Osinbajo said, the social housing scheme has so far seen 1,151.689 hectares of land been made ready for development, adding that, the target is to build 300,000 houses which has the capacity to accommodate a further 34,550 homes.

First Bank Plc traded over 148 million units of its shares after today’s trading session valued at N1.67 billion making the Tier-1 bank the highest traded shares, in volume and value, on the exchange today.

The buy-interests in the shares of the bank drove the price higher by 2.82% from the previous day’s closing price of N10.65, to close the day at N10.95, although the shares traded at N11.70 during the trading session.

The Nigerian Exchange market closed on a positive note amidst sell-offs and buy-interests as the benchmark All-Share Index (ASI) appreciated by 38 basis points. We saw the bulls dominate the bears in today’s trading session as market breadth indicated a positive mood.

The Central Bank of Nigeria has issued its guidelines on the disposal of Non-Permissible Income (NPI) for Non-Interest Financial Institutions (NIFI).

According to a statement which was signed by the Director, Financial Policy and Regulation Department of the CBN, Chibuzo Efobi, the guidelines were issued as part of efforts to standardise the treatment and disposal of NPI by NIFI in the country.

Efobi in the statement addressed to all NIFI said the NPI shall be put in a dedicated NPI account and shall not be mingled with the funds of non-interest banks.

Non-permissible income is any income that accrues to non-interest finance institutions, such as interest income, penalties for delayed payment of debt obligations, or any income declared by the ace of the institution.


The Federal Government has disclosed that it will support 2.4 million farmers with N600 billion through the Agro-Processing Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support project (APPEALS).

This was disclosed by President Muhammadu Buhari at the opening of the National Agricultural Show/Exhibition of the 2021 World Food Day, on Wednesday, in Abuja, themed: “Our Actions are our Future. Better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life,” according to NAN.

Represented by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammed Abubakar, the President stated that the Administration was doing its best to address challenges facing Nigeria’s agricultural sector.

Nigeria’s headline inflation in the month of September 2021, dropped further to 16.63% compared to 17.01% recorded in the previous month. This is according to the recently released CPI report for the month of September, by the National Bureau of Statistics.

According to the report, the consumer price index, which measures the rate of inflation rose by 16.63% year-on-year in the review month. This represents 0.38% point decrease compared to 17.01% recorded in August 2021.

Food inflation, which is a closely watched index also dropped to 19.57% in September from 20.3% recorded in the prior month while core inflation rose to 13.74%, up by 0.33% when compared with 13.41% recorded in August 2021.

We are focused on the development of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) and aims to assist new and existing entrepreneurs to overcome obstacles to growth through access to finance, proper business planning and developing entrepreneurship skills.