Emefiele is Times Man of The Year

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The Board of Editors of Daily Times has named Mr. Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of Central Bank, as the Man of the Year 2015. With uncommon dexterity, he has continued to manage the nation’s monetary policies, steering the economy through troubled waters. Quietly but efficiently, he kept the economy on course even when there was no Federal Executive Council for about six months after President Muhammadu Buhari assumed office and took time to constitute his cabinet. His efforts can best be appreciated when viewed against the backdrop of falling prices of crude oil in the international market.

 

The failing price of crude oil has put enormous pressure on Nigeria’s foreign reserves and its ability to meet demands for foreign exchange by various stakeholders. In his maiden address on assumption of office on June 3, 2014, Emefiele did not leave anyone in doubt that he was committed to creating “a central bank that is professional, a central bank that is apolitical, and people-focused. A Central Bank that spends its energies on building a resilient financial system that can serve the growth and development needs of our beloved country, Nigeria.” He also used the opportunity to set his 10-point agenda. Under the agenda, he said the CBN would pursue a gradual reduction in interest rates, remarking that “high rates create preserved incentives for commercial banks to simply buy virtually risk-free government bonds rather than lend to

He also used the opportunity to set his 10-point agenda. Under the agenda, he said the CBN would pursue a gradual reduction in interest rates, remarking that “high rates create preserved incentives for commercial banks to simply buy virtually risk-free government bonds rather than lend to real sector.” Emefiele also said the bank would continue to maintain exchange rate stability in view of the high import-dependent nature of the economy and also cautioned that a systematic depreciation of the naira might translate to considerable inflationary pressure with negative effect on macro-economic stability.

“Therefore, under my leadership, the bank will continue to focus on maintaining exchange rate stability and preserve the value of the domestic currency,” he had said. Emefiele added: “We will sustain the managed float regime in the management of the exchange rate as this will allow the bank to intervene when necessary to offset pressure on the exchange rate.” An analysis of operation of the CBN since Emefiele assumed office has shown that he had lived up to major points in the agenda. In an interview he granted to Financial Times recently, Emefiele defended his approach to stabilising the naira.

He believes that the recent steps that the apex bank took such as cutting off dollar access to importers of certain key goods will prevent further devaluation of naira. He also justified restricting imports, noting that it would stimulate local production and gave his views on the state of the parallel market and liquidity. Indeed, over time Emefiele has run the apex bank as a central bank that is professional, a central bank that is apolitical and people-focused as well as a Central Bank that spends its energies on building a resilient financial system that can serve the growth and development needs his country through various interventions the bank has made in the agricultural and energy sectors among others.

Besides ensuring financial stability in the economy, the apex bank under the leadership of Emefiele has been able to achieve the following: Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund Under Emefiele, the apex bank recently re-energized the N220 billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund (MSMEDF) with fresh guidelines. Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund In the same vein, the apex has also strengthened the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund (ACGSF) which was established by Decree No. 20 of 1977, and started operations in

He also justified restricting imports, noting that it would stimulate local production and gave his views on the state of the parallel market and liquidity. Indeed, over time Emefiele has run the apex bank as a central bank that is professional, a central bank that is apolitical and people-focused as well as a Central Bank that spends its energies on building a resilient financial system that can serve the growth and development needs his country through various interventions the bank has made in the agricultural and energy sectors among others. Besides ensuring financial stability in the economy, the apex bank under the leadership of Emefiele has been able to achieve the following: Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund Under Emefiele, the apex bank recently re-energized the N220 billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund (MSMEDF) with fresh guidelines.

Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund In the same vein, the apex has also strengthened the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund (ACGSF) which was established by Decree No. 20 of 1977, and started operations in April, 1978 with original share capital and paid-up capital of N100 million and N85.6 million, respectively. The Federal Government holds 60 percent and the Central Bank of Nigeria, 40 percent of the shares. The capital base of the scheme was increased to N3 billion in March, 2001. The fund guarantees credit facilities extended to farmers by banks up to 75 percent of the amount in default net of any security realized. The fund is managed by the Central Bank of Nigeria, which handles the day-to-day operations of the scheme.

The guidelines stipulate the eligible enterprises for which guarantees could be issued under the scheme. One is not surprised by the professionalism that Emefiele has brought to bear on the apex bank, given his pedigree. Prior to his appointment, Emefiele was the Group Managing Director of Zenith Bank Plc. Until then he was the Deputy Managing Director of the bank, having been appointed into that position in 2001.

Emefiele has been on the bank’s management team since inception and has held various management positions in the bank, including serving as the Bank’s Executive Director in charge of Corporate Banking, Treasury, Financial Control and Strategic Planning. Emefiele has over twentysix years banking experience and holds a B.Sc. and an MBA in Finance both from the University of Nigeria Nsukka. Before commencing his banking career, he lectured Finance, Bank Management, and Insurance at the University of Nigeria and University of Port Harcourt respectively. He is an alumnus of Stanford University, Harvard and Wharton Graduate School of Business where he took courses in Negotiation, Service Excellence, Critical Thinking, Leading Change and Strategy.

Until then he was the Deputy Managing Director of the bank, having been appointed into that position in 2001. Emefiele has been on the bank’s management team since inception and has held various management positions in the bank, including serving as the Bank’s Executive Director in charge of Corporate Banking, Treasury, Financial Control and Strategic Planning. Emefiele has over twentysix years banking experience and holds a B.Sc. and an MBA in Finance both from the University of Nigeria Nsukka.

Before commencing his banking career, he lectured Finance, Bank Management, and Insurance at the University of Nigeria and University of Port Harcourt respectively. He is an alumnus of Stanford University, Harvard and Wharton Graduate School of Business where he took courses in Negotiation, Service Excellence, Critical Thinking, Leading Change and Strategy.

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