NEPC establshes Export Trade House in Egypt to diversify non Oil base


Eunice Orike

Added to the responsibility in fulfillment of it’s mandate of promoting, developing and diversifying Nigeria’s non-oil export base, the Nigeria Export Promotion Council NEPC, has established an Export Trade House in Cairo, Egypt on a Public Private Partnership PPP, in partnership with a private firm.
The newly established Export Trade House is an initiative of the NEPC and Agriverdi Limited to have a central location where Made-in-Nigeria products can be shipped, displayed and distributed to different parts of the world.

Executive director of NEPC, Dr. Ezra Yakusak who spoke at the Advocacy Programme on Export Trade House, in Abuja, said the aim for establishing the trade house in Cairo is to promote the visibility of made-in-Nigeria products outside the country’s shores, reduce cost of logistics on the small and medium enterprises SMEs, and increase Nigeria’s share in the targeted markets.

This, he said is in line with the concept of a trade house that purchases and sells products for other businesses using their international expertise as practiced in China, Switzerland, the United States, Singapore and the United Kingdom.

Others include, creating employment for the nation’s teeming youths and increasing foreign direct investment inflows into Nigeria’s economy.

Yakusak explained that businesses that use trade houses could also benefit from its expertise and insight into international markets they operate in as well as get access to vendor financing through loans and credits.

Adding that the project is one of the council’s facilities aimed at increasing Nigeria’s international market share.

In his opening remarks, the NEPC Director of International Export Office, Babatunde Faleke, said that the trade house was established because export has become a tool the council must embrace to improve and promote the nation’s non-oil sector to the global market.

In addition, the NEPC partner on the Export trade House in Cairo and Chief Executive Officer, Agranverdi Limited, Mousalati Ghazwan, said that the partnership would ensure there are no more defaults in payments for Nigerian products.

“our council will ensure all quality defaults in Nigeria goods are removed. They will be thoroughly inspected to meet international standards”, he said.


NAICOM urges insurance CEOs to entrench sound business strategy

By Kehinde Ibrahim, Lagos

THE National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) has called on the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of insurance companies especially the broking firms to entrench sound business strategy that enhances sustainability and growth of the industry.

Speaking at this year’s retreat organised by the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB) for Chief Executive Officers of insurance broking firms in Lagos on Thursday, the Commissioner for Insurance/Chief Executive Officer of NAICOM, Mr. Olorundare Sunday Thomas also highlighted the way forward for the Nigerian insurance industry.

Thomas said the way forward for the industry is by changing the narrative by embracing transparency, engagement of all stakeholders, better innovative products, new sources of revenue, improved claims service, use of technology for inclusive insurance, diversification of business base and improved governance amongst others.

According to him, as CEOs, you need to be mindful of the need to entrench a sound “Business Strategy for Sustainability”.

He noted that “without a realistic and effective sustainable business strategy, such businesses are unlikely to deliver the gains that more sustainable performance could bring through the determination of their activities, behaviour, products, services and a detailed understanding of the environmental and social context in which they operate.”

Thomas said “You will agree with me that the imperative for a sound personal mastery and self-leadership cannot be over-emphasised as companies globally are under pressure from multiple stakeholders to adopt sustainable business practices in which the insurance broking arm is not an exception.”

He maintained that “As an arm of the insurance sector, your collective resolve to ensure business sustainability and collective growth and development with other arms of the industry will determine how far we can all go in achieving industry wide stability.”

The NAICOM boss warned that “the impact of unsustainable trends can create significant pressures on the industry’s profitability in the short and long run. They include: inadequate brokerage services to policyholders, poor claims handling service, price based competition among players, lack of innovative products that meet customer’s needs, concentration of operations in few locations, focus on big ticket businesses, as well as poor distribution channels and skills.”

He said the theme for the retreat “Business Strategy for Sustainability – Personal Mastery and Self Leadership” couldn’t have come at a better time than now that we have to look beyond all the challenges we are facing as a sector, economy, nation and the globe.

NAICOM CEO enjoined the CEOs of broking firms to continually explore ways with other stakeholders to facilitate economic prosperity; ensure environmental sustainability and social development to drive long term sustainable growth in the Nigerian insurance industry for the overall lasting benefits to the society, pertinent to our national and institutional growth.

He also emphasised that the insurance industry as a business is not outside of the same pressures as businesses in other industry or sectors.

Thomas listed some of the initiatives of the Commission to include: reaching out to the state governments, reaching out to Agencies of government, enhancing its technology infrastructure, as well as binging the Nigerian insurance industry into the mainstream of continental and global relevance.

He reiterated NAICOM’s commitment to continuous development and growth of the Nigerian insurance sector thus, always prepared to collaborate with all stakeholders in promoting and entrenching good business strategies for sustainability of the Nigerian Insurance Industry.