By Providence Obuh
Aggrieved over the way and manner in which foreign investors play around with the Nigerian capital market in the name of investment, a Nigerian investor shared with the Vanguard Investors Forum, some of the solutions to curb foreign investors’ influx into the market.
Shareholder Activist and a founding member of Nigeria Shareholders Solidarity Association, Alhaji Gbadebo Olatokunbo:
As a Nigerian and stakeholder in our capitalmarket affairs, I couldn’t continue to pretend nor hold back my frustration any further and I have to hereby confess that, I hate to continue hearing of how important the foreign-investors (those that I tagged “Casino-Players” and care less about our economy) are to our economy, which to my thinking have beclouded our senses of reasoning so much so that we couldn’t think right any more or have lost focus/vision on whose interest were paramount at this stage of our economic-survival.
After all,what is the benefit of any relationship, if one must depend on the other for support at all time or what always led to foreign-relationship between two countries, if it will not be of benefit to both parties. I mean why does the economic-fundamentals say “All things being equal” or why must we always be at the receiving-end in all our foreign-participations; can’t we for once be ourselves.
I think it is high-time we do what the Americans did to the British during their eight years “War of Independence” we should revolt if need be and look inwards to develop local-policy for the benefit of our economy because others did so in the past. The Chinese did it and they are better off today, we just have to do something more positive concerning our capital market/economic problems; if not, all the efforts on the capital market might be in vain.
The Indians thought the world a great lesson by spreading their citizens all over the globe in order to mobilise fund to develop “A Modern/Powerful Economy,” with every money (legitimate/otherwise) made by them abroad and going back to India for the development/benefit of their economy.
Our focus should be on the Nigerians in Diaspora because retail investors held stocks for long term development more than others, while the citizens were more reliable in business,e.g. Glo to others in the communication industry and we could begin with those in Britain, USA, Canada, Germany or which ever way we thought best, with a policy for the next two to five years for them to fill in the gap and acquire many stocks on our market so that what will be left for the “foreign-casino-player investors” will not be more than 15 percent of the total index.
SEC need the support/collaboration of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Central Bank of Nigeria, EFCC, External Affairs Ministry and other stakeholders on the policy and its execution.
Really, it could be done and should be seriously looked into because there are solutions and advantages in every challenges and we cannot continue to allow outsiders to toy and dictate the mood of our economy. It is a coup against some known fundamentals and must be executed as such for the benefit of our economy, most especially now that the capital market is down.