Stories By PETER EGWUATU
The Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE has assured the Federal Government of its commitment to developing the tourism sector, just as the sub sector accounts for N32 billion of the total value of securities listed on the exchange.
The Chief Executive Officer, NSE, Mr. Oscar Onyema, who gave the assurance last week in Lagos during the inauguration of the board and planning committee of the presidential summit on tourism said, “The NSE is committed to the development of the tourism sector in Nigeria and we believe that the national discourse will set the tone for a higher level of interest and investment in the sector than ever witnessed before now.
We currently have nine quoted companies in the tourism sector with a total market cap of over N32 billion. We stand ready to provide our platform for capital raising, both equity and debt, for companies in the sector.”
He also appealed to other private sector bodies to consider partnering with government in various areas of our national economy, as government alone cannot develop the economy.
According to him “We request that government continue to create a level playing field and initiate investment friendly policies that will encourage public-private partnership in the country. The NSE will continue to collaborate with government and its various agencies for further development of our national economy.”
He noted that the Minister of Culture, Tourism & National Orientation, Chief Edem Duke had during his last visit to the NSE in October 2013 requested that the exchange partner with his ministry in organizing a national discourse on tourism in 2014, to help stir up interest and generate investment towards culture and tourism in Nigeria.
In his own remark, the Minister of Culture, Tourism & National Orientation, Chief Duke said “In the last few weeks there have been a robust debate concerning the rebasing of the nation’s economy and for over two years I have been trying to advocate especially among my colleagues and the managers of our economy that tourism sector is a new frontier both in diversifying the economy for wealth creation opportunity for individual and more importantly creating job for our country.”
Continuing, he said “Quite a long time it sounded like a very lone voice and there was a time I thought something was wrong with me but when the issue of rebasing of the economy came up it became obvious that the issue the lonely voice raised earlier became something that we now celebrate.
“I believed that there is a lot of brand that has not been covered, therefore the Presidential summit and tourism and investment prospects is something that will yield quite a lot of positive result.
With the report which came from the World Traveling and Tourism Council working in collaborating with World Bank, Ministry of Aviations, Ministry of Trade and Development, in fact part of the report vindicate that in 184 countries around the world Nigeria is the second most likely destination for growth and investment between the year 2012 and 2013.”