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Nigeria: ‘Investment flows through Citibank to double’

By on February 3, 2012

Citibank expects annual investment flows into Nigeria through its banking platform to double to around $2bn this year, as multinational firms and foreign funds expand operations, its country officer, Mr. Emeka Emuwa, told Reuters on Thursday.

Emuwa also said Africa’s second-biggest economy was witnessing an increasing mix of trade and investment from Africa and Asia, though the bulk was largely from Europe and the United States.

Contributions to trade and investment flows from Africa and Asia were likely to overtake Europe and North America over the next four-five years, he said in an interview in his office in Lagos.

“In 2011, we saw flows of almost $1bn, made up of both portfolio flows and FDIs (foreign direct investment). We expect this to double this year, a lot of which will come from the portfolio side and foreign companies expanding in the country,” Emuwa said.

He said Citi, which had been in Nigeria for 27 years, had been focused on institutional banking and public sector finance, but was looking to develop consumer banking and equity brokerage over the next three years.Headlines on Nigeria this year have been dominated more by an upsurge in violence by Islamist sect, Boko Haram, in the north than by investment flows. More than 250 people were killed by the group in January, according to Human Rights Watch.But the violence is taking place hundreds of kilometres north of the commercial hub Lagos and the south eastern oil fields. Emuwa said the unrest was not impacting investment.” From 2010 to 2011, what we saw coming through our own channels grew by a multiple of five-six times on the portfolio side and foreign direct investment,” Emuwa said.

“If you use investment flows, current and potential, to measure the sensitivity of Boko Haram, I’d say I haven’t yet seen … an adverse impact,” he said, adding that investors saw it as something to consider, but not enough to change their investment plans.

Analysts said northern Nigeria, where most of Boko Haram’s attacks had taken place, contributed such a small portion to the country’s GDP that its broad economic fundamentals had not been affected by the instability. Citi has 12 branches in Nigeria and is looking to expand.” We don’t have any consumer banking at all, our business is entirely institutional but given the growth in consumer incomes in Nigeria, it is a new and growing segment for us,” Emuwa told Reuters.

One Comment

  1. Anonymous

    February 5, 2012 at 2:30 pm

    Nigerians please READ the NNPC Policy.
    And TELL me why the crops of thieves starting from the GROUP managing Directors are STILL in office.
    Established by the NNPC Act No. 33 of 1st April, 1977
    Management of All Government in the Nigerian oil Industry
    Coordinating the development of Nigerians first gas master plan (GMP)
    Ensures efficient and effective operations in both downstream and upstream operations in the oil and gas sector
    Co-ordinates the activities of its subsidiaries for effective service delivery.
    Madam Minister,
    (1) Please ASK yourself, Have these managers respected there VALUES .
    (2) With the huge fraud within the NNPC and its agents, the managers, starting from GROUP Managing directors have failed Woefully, defrauding the NATION and bastardising with huge abuse the oil sector which ought to keep every Nigerian happy.
    (3) No body is above the law , these guys have committed crimes, relocating them within NNPC is Nothing More like a MOCKERY to Nigerians .
    MADAM Minister IT’S A BIG SHAME, you cannot take action on the thieves .