Factors that will shape Nigerian banks’ future
The outgoing Chairman of Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, (CIBN), Lagos branch, Bolade Abiola has stressed that further devaluation of the naira, declining oil fortune and depletion of the foreign reserves are some of the economic indices that will shape the future of the nation’s Deposit Money Banks (DMBs)
Other factors, according to him, are infrastructure deficit and low human capital capacity development.
Speaking at the association’s 2014 yearly general meeting and election of new executive members, he noted that despite the current economic and political challenges facing the nation, the banking industry remained strong and robust.
“I have no doubt that our enormous resources and economic potential will enable our banks to continue to thrive,” he said.
The banker said he believed the future growth of the economy would have to be driven by agriculture, telecommunications and services as Nigeria had yet to meet the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ quota of 2.1 million barrels per day amid inadequate external reserves.
The newly-elected Chairperson, CIBN, Lagos Branch, Taiwo Ige, said the economic managers were forced to devalue the naira because the nation depended heavily on imported raw materials and finished goods.
She, therefore, emphasised the need to salvage the economy through the diversification of the economy.
Ige added: “The way things are, we need to devalue the naira because we are an import-dependent country. After the rebasing of our economy, people have been calling for diversification of the economy into some other profitable sectors so that we don’t put all our hope on crude oil.”
The expert said the way to restore the “real value” of the naira was to pay less attention to crude oil while developing other sustainable sectors of the economy.
Ige, a former Chairperson, Association of Professional Women Bankers, supported the International Monetary Fund’s call for more devaluation of the naira because there were no economic indices to shore up the value of the country’s currency.
“No, we don’t have it now in Nigeria. As long as we continue to import some of the things we don’t need even though some of the goods can be produced here in Nigeria,” she added.
At the AGM, Ige became the first woman to head the Lagos branch of the CIBN since its establishment in 1978.
She will lead the premier branch for the next two renewable years.
In her acceptance speech, she said: “This is a responsibility that I do not take lightly and will endeavour to represent you with the utmost transparency and boldness that will return the branch’s status to profitability,” she said.
Part of her immediate plans will be to develop relevant courses, rebrand the branch, increase the membership base of the body scattered in various sectors of the economy, and strengthen its consultancy services.
Having led the APWB through a turbulent period between 2009 and 2011 when the banking industry went through challenges, Ige believes she can repeat the same success.
Other elected executive members of the branch are Mr. Kola Abdul, Mr. Peter Ashade, Mr. Adeoye Adeyemo and Mr. Jide Iyanda as the first vice chairman, second vice chairman, honourary secretary and publicity secretary, respectively.
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