CIBN Rates Tinubu High On Economic Reform Initiatives
….As President Solicits Bankers’ Support For Growth
The Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) on Wednesday commended President Bola Tinubu’s economic reform initiatives tagged ‘Renewed Hope Agenda’, saying the ongoing implementation of the agenda will help grow the economy.
The President and Chairman of CIBN Council, Ken Opara, gave this scorecard at the 16th Annual Banking and Finance Conference with the theme “Nigeria’s Economic Growth and Empowerment: The Role of the Financial Services Industry” which kicked off in Abuja.
The banker expressed optimism that the reforms, if followed through, would not only unlock the full potential of the nation’s economy but also position Nigeria on a recovery roadmap with promising benefits for the country and the African continent.
President Bola Tinubu, who was represented by the Vice President, Kassim Shettima, in his goodwill address expressed his confidence in Nigeria’s Banking and Finance industry, describing it as the springboard for the realisation of the present administration’s economic agenda.
He said: “The future is already here, and this industry is a springboard for the success of our reforms and programmes. Whether in incorporating blockchain technology or expanding financial inclusion to deliver dividends of democracy to banking and unbanked citizens, Nigeria is here to occupy the high-table in a fast-changing world.
”I invite you as friends and colleagues to join us in serving the nation. We have promised to reposition consumer finance, and that can’t be done without you. We have promised to incentivise and finance value-addition to our agricultural and other products, and you are our ally in this. We need you because Nigeria teeters on the edge of a precarious balance of payments as we import more than we export”, the President added.
According to him, the theme of the conference is very apt as it resonates with the context of the current realities in the country and “amplifies the fact that agenda setting for the country must be a continuous exercise, especially now that we have a new government in place. The topic also resonates with the current administration’s reforms agenda.
Tinubu urged the professional body of bankers to continue to be at the forefront in all initiatives aimed at building capacity and skills for manpower in the financial services industry.
In his remarks at the forum, the Acting Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Folashodun Shonubi, pointed out when the financial sector is rated based on its economic contribution, it had been under-performing over the years.
He, therefore, charged the financial sector players to explore means of making the sector to contribute more than its current 3.6 per cent contribution to the nation’s GDP.
The apex bank governor said: “At this conference, we should sit down and find what the major drivers are, so that we can influence and actively engage the economy.
“For us to contribute a lot of ourselves, we as bankers need to be more conscious, a bit more active on advocacies that are actionable” Shonubi added.