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BUSINESS ROUNDUP: Nigeria’s foreign reserves hit $38.18bn; Bitcoin investors gain $137.74bn in one week; Other stories

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Nigeria retains position, scores lower in global competitiveness index

Hello, and welcome to Business Roundup this week. Here, we bring you highlights of events that happened during the week -from the capital market to the mainstream business activities, while not forgetting the tech/economy build up.

Here are the Headlines:

• Nigeria’s foreign reserves hit 21-month high at $38.18bn
• Buhari blames organised labour for dwindling revenues
• Nigerian govt approves 2022 budget proposal of N16.39tr
• Bitcoin investors gain $137.74bn in one week

Summary:

How much is in Nigeria’s foreign reserves?

You are probably wondering how much is Nigeria’s foreign reserves at the moment. Well, what we know is what the Central Bank of Nigeria had put forward.

During the week, we learnt that it increased by $1.40 billion, to stand at $38.18bn. In fact, the recorded rise was said to be the highest growth of Nigeria’s foreign reserves in 21 months.

Perhaps, we should ask what we did differently in the last 21 months. We may, as well, need to intensify efforts in this area if we are a country that learns for track records.

Buhari and the organized labour blame game

So, we got a new explanation for the reason behind the country’s diminishing revenue bottom line. At the centre is President Muhammadu Buhari’s argument during the presentation of the 2022 budget before a joint session of the National Assembly in Abuja on Thursday.

What did he say? The president blamed the organised labour for the country’s dwindling revenues. According to him, this was because Nigeria still pays fuel subsidies.

Wondering if Nigeria is the only country in the world paying subsidies? It may interest you to know that nearly every country pays a type of subsidy or the other, ranging from agricultural, to oil, fossil fuel and the list is endless.

Nigeria now has an approved budget for 2022

Congratulations, Nigeria has got its 2022 budget approved. If nothing else happened on Wednesday, at least, the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved the 2022 budget proposal of N16.39 trillion.

Remember the popular Solomon Grandy nursery rhyme? We had a demo of it. FEC on Wednesday, Assembly on Thursday. We can only hope for the best at this time.

Read also: BUSINESS ROUNDUP: Fintechs will be bigger than banks; Africa to add 1.2mbd to crude oil output by 2026; Other stories

We also must bear in mind the concerns raised by the Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed when she said the government would continue to borrow to fund infrastructural projects due to paucity of funds. It’s simple. With the APC-government, borrowing may not end anytime soon. We all have to be prepared for a 2022 where borrowing may take new turns.

The bitcoin quantum leap

After a long while, Bitcoin found its way back to $50,000 in value. Remember that some weeks back, Bitcoin in particular had suffered significantly following China’s regulatory clampdown.

This is a bit of fresh air for our friends who actively trade Bitcoin as crypto merchants. Can we then say Bitcoin is back stronger? Is it safe again to trade? Or, another trap for unsuspecting crypto dealers by the big players?

We can only observe the trend to make informed decisions. For now, it’s impressive to see Bitcoin rebound with its value increasing by 23.1 percent, up from $40,906 per coin.

On NSE ROUNDUP: Investors pocket N20.4bn as market cap rises by 0.1%

Quick recap on developments around the capital market. One, the equity capitalization at the Nigerian capital market rose by 0.1 percent at the close of trading on Friday.

Two, this rise led the equity capitalization to increase by N20.43 billion from N21.27 trillion to N21.29 trillion at the close of the day’s business.

Three, the All Share Index was up by 39.21 to close at 40,868.36 compared to 40,829.15 posted the previous day. Finally, investors traded 331.05 million shares valued at N2.91 billion in 3,986 deals on Friday.

Meanwhile, on the tech space this week, we saw how tech, in Nigeria, will continue to be a major driver of the economy. We arrived at this conclusion because we continue to see more founders spring up with innovative ideas.

Some of the stories we tracked include the story of Bitmama that secured funding of over $300K. Another major story is the story of smallChops, a foodtech venture that seem to be on a mission to become a cross continental food business leveraging technology.

Remarks

Thanks for joining the roundup this week. See you next week for another serving. And, don’t forget, for the latest news and updates from around the globe, keep reading Ripples Nigeria.

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