By Nkiruka Nnorom
ASSOCIATION of Assets Custodians of Nigeria, AACN, has expressed commitment toward improving and promoting activities of portfolio investors in the country.
AACN President, Mrs. Taiwo Sonola, made the commitment at a one-day investors’ conference, tagged: “Nigeria: The Economics of the Capital Market”, saying that the potential of Nigeria’s economy is enormous and it is important that the opportunities are showcased globally.
Portfolio investors have been withdrawing from Nigeria owing to uncertainty in the economy. As at March this year, foreign portfolio investors had withdrawn N124.24 billion from the stock market, 27.3 percent higher than N97.63 billion inflow.
She explained that the conference aimed to build foreign investor confidence and provide a platform for foreign investors to network with the Nigerian capital market regulators and operators with particular focus on custodians, fund managers, broker dealers, and regulators.
Against the backdrop of the successful conduct of general elections in Nigeria, Sonola reassured international investors of the safety of their investments in the country, while highlighting the huge potential to undecided investors.
She assured that the association would maintain the reputation of the Annual Nigerian Investors Day as a veritable platform to promote the Nigerian economy, adding that the next edition would be reinvigorated and focused on a salient issue on Africa’s biggest oil producer, with the purpose of unlocking opportunities in such an area.
Adebola Adedeji, Financial Secretary, AACN, noted that the association has contributed in no small measure towards development of the Nigerian financial markets, including initiatives with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, and the Financial Market Dealers Association to facilitate a more efficient and investor-friendly electronic Certificate of Capital Importation, CCI, processes for the various investment products in Nigeria and collaboration with the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, to initiate the mandatory appointment of Custodians to registered Collective Investment Schemes, CIS, and joint development of operational guidelines and other prerequisites for securities lending in the Nigerian capital market.
Mr. Godwin Emefiele, CBN governor commended AACN for organizing the forum, which he said fits into the apex bank’s and the federal government’s goal of making Nigeria Africa’s top investment destination.