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Oyo Ready To Take Full Advantage Of African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) – Makinde



Oyo State Governor, ‘Seyi Makinde, has declared that the state was prepared to take full advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA).
Makinde, who spoke at AFCFTA’s Conversation with Africa Forum, held in Gaborone, Botswana, maintained that Oyo State has become a prime investment destination in Nigeria.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, indicated that Makinde made this public in a presentation made on his behalf by his Chief of Staff, Hon. Segun Ogunwuyi.
While speaking on the topic ‘Scaling Up Production For the AFCFTA Market: Opportunities in Oyo State, Nigeria’, the governor listed renewable energy, agriculture and agribusiness, real estate, tourism, mining and education sectors as areas with key investment opportunities in the state.
The statement added that Governor Makinde also mentioned the Ibadan Dry Port, ancillary aviation facilities at the Ibadan Airport, Ilutuntun Business District, road and transport infrastructure targeted at economic development as some of the key investment opportunities in the state.
The governor further highlighted the key investment opportunities in the energy sector to include independent power projects, the potential 450 megawatts capacity Ikere Gorge Dam,  other dams, waste to energy/refuse-derived fuels as well as wind and solar power farms.
In the agribusiness sector, the governor listed cassava value addition, including cassava to ethanol, flour and starch, as some of the investment opportunities.
He also named large poultry processing, large-scale industrial cash and food crop farming, industrial aquaculture farming and cashew nut processing, among other opportunities in the agriculture/agribusiness sector in the state.
According to Governor Makinde, Oyo State has comparative advantage across all the areas of investment with ongoing massive infrastructure development targeted at economic growth including the ongoing upgrade of Ibadan Airport, the Federal Government-constructed Lagos-Ibadan railway line, which connects Lagos to the Inland Dry Port, Ibadan.
He stated that the availability of over 2.7 million hectares of arable land for backward integration and outgrower schemes, the presence of leading agricultural input fabricators and agro-processors, forest land covering two ecological zones, availability of 23 man-made lakes for fish production and 11 state-owned farm settlements places Oyo State at a position of advantage for investments in agriculture.
The governor, who equally called for investments in the state’s real estate, tourism and hospitality, mining and education sectors, said there are various government incentives and support for all categories of investments including public-private partnership agreements.
He promised tax exemptions to potential investors as well as pioneer status and duty-free imports within the Free Trade Zone.
Makinde also assured investors of easy access to the massive arable lands, access to state and federal agriculture credit schemes, Joint Venture partnerships on mining licences as well as support for educational partnerships.
He specifically highlighted business-to-business relationships, educational collaborations, agriculture and agribusiness as well as mining as some of the areas of immediate collaboration where investors can explore opportunities in the state.
He further declared that the state is open to collaborating with Conversation with Africa Forum to have the next summit in Oyo State, Nigeria.
The State’s Commissioner for Public Works, Infrastructure and Transport, Prof Dahud Kehinde Sangodoyin, who also spoke at the Forum, further highlighted what he called the huge opportunities open to investors in Oyo State in the infrastructure sector.
Taiwo Adisa
Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde

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UBA Group Dominates the 2021 Banker Awards, Wins ‘African Bank of the Year’




Breaks the Banker Magazine Record as it wins Best Bank in Nigeria and 12 of Its Subsidiaries Africa’s global bank, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc yet again, reaffirms its leadership position across Africa, as the bank has been globally recognised as the African Bank of the year 2021 by the Banker Magazine, a leading global finance news publication published by the Financial Times of London.


UBA’s solid financial performance, its excellent service delivery to customers and its continuous role of facilitating rapid economic growth across the African continent were some of the reasons that led to the bank being named best bank in 12 of its African subsidiaries and in Nigeria. UBA Nigeria Plc, UBA Benin, UBA Burkina Faso, UBA Cameroon, UBA Chad, UBA Congo Brazzaville, UBA Cote D’Ivoire, UBA Gabon, UBA Guinea, UBA Liberia, UBA Senegal, UBA Sierra Leone and UBA Zambia all came out top as the best banks in their respective countries.


This will not be a first for UBA. In 2020, six of its subsidiaries in Benin, Cote D’Ivoire, Chad, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Zambia were winners of the Best Bank award. This year, the UBA Group is breaking a record with its exceptional wins as African Bank of the Year and Bank of the year in 13 countries. The total 14 awards makes it the first time ever in the history of the almost 100 years of The banker, that any banking group will be clinching as many as 14 wins in a single year.

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At the Virtual award ceremony which was held on December 1st 2021, the Middle East and Africa Editor for The Banker, John Everington, explained at the event that a rigorous and highly analytical process is made annually to reach the decision for each Bank of the Year award and the institution’s reputation for independence, authority and integrity is thoroughly applied to each submission.


“While several African banks impressed the judges this year, there was no doubt as to the worthiest recipient of the Bank of the Year for Africa – UBA Group – a clear winner across a wide range of criteria. UBA has performed impressively across its footprint with a strong financial performance across most of its markets,” Everington said.


UBA’s Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Kennedy Uzoka, who expressed delight over the recognition from The Banker stated “Like I always say, at UBA, we must be doing something right. Winning 14 total awards in13 subsidiaries and the Bank of the Year on the African continent is a big achievement.’


Continuing, Uzoka said, “The recognitions come as a reassurance that we are on track in consolidating our leadership position in Africa, as we continue to create superior value for all our stakeholders. We have our millions of customers across the globe and our many thousands of staff to thank for this. They are the very reason why we keep winning’


Since1926, the Bank of the Year awards has been celebrating the best of global banking and is regarded as the industry standard for banking excellence. The 2021 edition highlights those institutions that have outshone their peers in terms of performance, strategic initiatives and response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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The Banker Magazine is a publication of the Financial Times – a leading global finance news publication which has been in existence since 1888. The Banker magazine is the definitive reference in international banking for high level decision makers.


United Bank for Africa Plc is a leading Pan-African financial institution, offering banking services to more than twenty-five million customers, across over 1,000 business offices and customer touch points, in 20 African countries.


With presence in the United States of America, the United Kingdom and France, UBA is connecting people and businesses across Africa through retail; commercial and corporate banking; innovative cross-border payments and remittances; trade finance and ancillary banking services

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Crisis Rocks Ghana Parliament As Members Clash Over 2022 budget




The 2022 budget of Ghana suffered another set back as the House could not reach concerts on its passage.


The Minister of Finance, Mr. Ken Ofori Atta had presented the budget for the House to deliberate upon and possibly approve it for passage to the president to work with. But the House is in disagreement.


The Majority members had earlier hoped in easy passage but, they were shocked to witness a tie in the House. The ruling Party, New Patriotic Party ( NPP) has 137 members in the House, same to the main opposition party, The New Democratic Congress(NDC)


The Speaker who could have added one to the ruling NPP lacks the constitutional right, as the Constitution denies him voting right as the presiding officer.


The case will then be taken to the Supreme Court for intervention. The issue has been a major challenge threatening the smooth democracy in the country. The decision to go to Supreme Court is expected to be taken before or by Friday sitting.


By Moses Owopade,

Accra, Ghana.

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