Nigeria champions new pan-African bank

Posted On February 8, 2006 | Written by Emmanuel Oluwatosin

The stage for the take-off of what may emerge as Africa’s biggest and most-capitalised investment bank was set yesterday in Abuja when the Federal Government inaugurated a 12-man committee to midwife the bank’s formation. The committee, which comprises of the country’s very best in public finance, banking and the private sector, is headed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Prof. Charles Soludo.

The government is optimistic that it can successfully spearhead the bank’s formation because of Nigeria’s range of resources such as growing foreign reserves, increasing earnings from crude oil, its major roles in the establishment of some pan-African financial institutions and national economic growth under the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS).

The pan-African bank is expected to provide fund for the region’s weak infrastructural platforms and strengthen the member-countries’ investment portfolios. Without any hitches in its formative stage, the bank to be known as the African Investment Bank, will begin operations in 2009 with its headquarters in Nigeria.

Other members of the committee are: the CBN Deputy Governor, (Financial Sector Surveillance), Mr. Tunde Lemo, who is its alternate chairman; the CBN Deputy Governor, (Operations), Dr. Shamsudeen Usman; and Prof. Sylvester Monye of the Federal Ministry of Finance, Abuja.

Others are former President, Afrexim, Mr. Chris Edordu; Dr. Seyyid Abdulai, former Director General of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries OPEC (Funds); Oba O. Fajana and Alhaji Aliko Dangote who is representing the private sector.

The rest are the Group Managing Director of the United Bank for Africa (UBA), Mr. Tony Elumelu; the Managing Director of Guaranty Trust Bank, Mr. Tayo Aderinokun; the Managing Director of Access Bank Group Plc, Mr. Aigboje-Imoukhuede and the Special Adviser to the CBN Governor, Mr. Chidozie Emenuga, who will serve as the committee’s secretary.

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