10 Key Takeaways From The 2018 CFA Society Nigeria Investment Conference

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Thursday, November 09, 2018 6.30AM / Ottoabasi Abasiekong, Proshare WebTV

 

The Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA) Society of  Nigeria today hosted it's 2018 Nigeria Investment Conference, which focused on the theme "Let's Measure Up" in Lagos. 

 

It brought together investment professionals, financial experts, policy makers, regulators, bankers, industry leaders, analysts, scholars and technocrats. 

 

Find below the ten (10) key takeaways from the conference:

 

Platform for Policy Dialogue to Improve Nigeria's Financial Market

The President of CFA Society Nigeria Mr Banji Fehintola in his welcome address at the 2018 investment conference, described the event as a platform for dialogue and advocacy to improve the landscape of the financial market. 

Fehintola said the CFA Society at the global level is leading the investment profession, by promoting the highest standards & ethics in the industry.

 

Nigeria is the Future of CFA

Mr Paul Smith the President of the CFA Institute in his remarks was full of optimism about Nigeria. According to him the country's demography is a compelling case for investments. 

With 60% of the population under 30, Smith  sees Nigeria as the future of the CFA and is the fastest growing market of  the institute.

 

Trust is Key for Financial Institutions in Nigeria

At the panel session on “Boosting Confidence in the Financial Services Industry-The Role of Ethics, Incentives & Behavioral Changes” the discussant Shehu Mohammed, FCA Sarkin Shanum Kano, Mr Abubakar Suleiman, MD/CEO Sterling Bank, Mr Oscar Onyema CEO of the Nigeria Stock Exchange and Mr Andrew Alli, Non-Executive Director, CDC Group, in their submissions agreed that post-2008 global financial crisis, financial institutions must place top emphasis on building trust with their clients and customers. 

Mr Abubakar Suleiman shared that “Trust” was one way to unlock the Nigerian economy and grow its commerce, while Mr Oscar Onyema alluded to the Elderman report of 2017, which showed that institutional investors see it as the vital to their investments in the financial and capital market. 

Shehu Mohammed was of the view that “Trust” was key to the sustainability of financial institutions in the country, with Mr Andrew Alli making a strong case for transparency between the financial market players and investment analysts.

 

3 Ways to Get  the Retail Investors Back to the Nigerian Capital Market

At the 2018 CFA Investment conference the CEO of the Nigeria stock exchange Mr Oscar Onyema, OON  responding to the question on What are the steps to be taken to get the retail investors back to the capital market, identified three areas to be explored namely;

  • Investor Education- Where the emphasis should be financial literacy and sensitization of the retail investors on developments in the market, what has changed post 2008 market crisis and what they stand to benefit investing.
  • Strong Institutions- The players in the capital market ecosystem must have strong corporate governance to gain the trust and confidence of the retail investors. These are quoted companies that have sustainable plans and strategies in value creation for the market.
  • Fourth Industrial Revolution: With the fourth industrial revolution that is driven by digital technology, there are immense opportunities to reach out to the retail investors, through their mobile phones, with technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Analytics, Big data etc.

 

Sanctity of Contracts, Key to Attracting Infrastructure Investments in Nigeria

In the panel session that looked at “Bridging the Infrastructure Gap: What Nigeria must do to measure up with the Developed world” discussants Mr Oliver Andrews, Chief Investment Officer African Finance Corporation, Bolaji Balogun CEO Chapel Hill Denham, Mrs Eme Essien Lore, Country Manager, International Finance Corporation, Mr Jabalo Oshikanlu, Legal and Compliance Director, ARM-HARITH Infrastructure Fund agreed that for Nigeria must give top priority to the “Sanctity of Contracts”. 

The panelists in their views believed irrespective of the change in government, contracts must be respected by policy makers to inspire confidence in the country. 

It therefore meant that Nigeria’s quest to address its infrastructure deficit through investments and public-private partnership can be achieved if it values the “Sanctity of Contracts”.

 

Women Matter and Their Voice Must be Heard

It was a lively session with Mrs Carla Harris Vice Chairman of Morgan Stanley who based on her over 3 decade experience in Wall street, challenged the Nigerian women in finance, to step up and make their voices heard in the boardrooms and the industry. 

She said work-life balance was important and the women have to find a way to negotiate on the issues of pay gap inequality. 

Mrs Carla Harris also said “Gender Diversity and Inclusion is the commercially right thing to do”.

 

CBN will Continue to Reign in on Inflation

The Central Bank Governor Mr Godwin Emefiele was the special guest at the 2018 CFA Society Nigeria conference, he lauded the institute and its role in promoting transparency and professionalism in the Nigerian investment space. 

Emefiele informed stakeholders in a session on “Monetary Policy and Exchange Rate” shared that the tightening monetary policy approach will continue. 

According to him the focus is to reign in on inflation, while the FX restriction on 41 items will be sustained in the medium term.

 

How to Address the Poverty Challenge in Nigeria

In the session “Putting it all Together: 2019 Economic & Investment Outlook” notable financial expert Mr Bismarck Rewane asserted that for Nigeria to tackle the poverty challenge, policy makers must look at growing the economy and addressing the distribution of income".

 

Growth at 6% vital for Reducing Poverty

Nigerian economist Dr Doyin Salami giving his perspective on the poverty issue in the country, emphasized the need for Nigeria to grow at 6% in the next five years if it is to drastically reduce poverty. 

He harped on a productive economy that can attract private capital investments.

 

Nigeria should make efforts to attract Domestic Direct Investments

Representing the Minister for Industries, Trade and Investments the Executive Secretary and CEO of the National Investment Promotion Council, NIPC Yewande Sadiku speaking on “Attracting Foreign Direct Investments through Ease of Doing Business Reforms”, said more businesses are formed in an environment that makes business formation easier. 

She stressed that there was a correlation between Ease of Doing Business and economic prosperity, and Nigeria should make efforts to attract Domestic Direct Investments and not just Foreign Direct Investments.


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