For the umpteenth time, the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS) has highlighted the capital market’s role in supporting the mobilisation and deployment of resources to fund infrastructure development in Nigeria.
Addressing journalists at a press briefing to announce the forthcoming 2017 CIS yearly national workshop, slated for July 4, in Abuja, the chairman, organising committee, Umaru Kwairanga, maintained that infrastructure deficit remains a major challenge to Nigeria’s efforts to achieve its full development potential.
According to him, the nation’s capital market has the potential to fill the gap in infrastructure investment given the limited resources of government and banks.He pointed out that there is no single solution to Nigeria’s infrastructure needs, noting the most effective approach lies in mobilising funds that would finance critical infrastructure development through the instrumentality of the capital market.
On how the macro economic instability has impacted trading on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, he said: “Very badly, the index and market capitalisation were down by almost five per cent, while the uncertainty lasted and trading volumes halved from previous years. As you know, participation in our capital market has been slightly skewed in favour of foreign portfolio investors for most of the past decade.
“This category of investors refused to participate in the Nigerian capital market while the foreign exchange (forex) issues persisted. I believe the drastic dip in liquidity of the market was partly due to the refusal of this category of investors to play in the market while the macro economic issues were prevalent
Accessing the current level of confidence in the market, Kwairanga admitted that Investor confidence is gradually returning as can be seen by the positive numbers in the recent weeks.
He urged government and other regulatory authorities to remain consistent in their resolve to tackle the issues that have held the economy down in the past few years.“Our prayer is that the Government, the Central Bank of Nigeria, and other regulators remained consistent in their resolve to tackle the issues that have held our economy and this great country’s potential down in recent years. That will definitely boost investors’ confidence further and guarantee stability
Speaking on the recent rally witnessed in the market, a council member of CIS, Mrs. Nkoli Edoka, described it as a ‘natural course’.According to her, “the stocks have been trading below their good value and it is a good time to catch into the market. The economy is moving forward, we have stayed in this particular price for a long time and the companies are still there posting good dividend.
“Foreigners are beginning to come back to the market and there is more transparency. The federal government savings bond is also functional. You can buy and sell. Government is trying to provide liquidity in the market. In fact, everybody is now out to develop the market.”