Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Chinese Investors Express Interest in Nigerian Bank's Acquisition

Chinese investors express interest in Nigerian bank’s acquisition

Wednesday, 11 May 2011 00:00 By Taiwo Hassan

THE Chinese government may soon disburse $500 million (about N75 billion) to some African countries for the development of their basic infrastructure and economies, going by indications from the President, China Association of Africa Studies, An Yongyu.

Also, the Chinese government has expressed interest in the acquisition of one of the rescued banks, as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was willing to sell them to international investors, as part of efforts to increase Chinese investments in Nigeria.

In preparatory for the acquisition, some Chinese investors have concluded plans to meet the Federal Government officials and CBN Governor in Abuja, before the end of the week to express their interest in the bank.

Making this disclosure at a Business Luncheon and media briefing for visiting eminent Chinese businessmen to the country in Lagos on Monday, he said the Chinese government was prepared to strengthen her economic ties with Nigeria in the area of Agriculture and banking of the nation’s economy.

According to An, the donation of $500 million grant to African countries, including Nigeria, was aimed at ensuring an end to infrastructural problems, besides promoting their economic advancement.

He said the Chinese investors were in Nigeria to ensure that the Federal Government got its economic policy right, especially in the areas of agriculture and banking reform.

An added that plans are underway by the Chinese government to set up financial institution in Nigeria, apart from the plan to acquire one of the CBN’s rescued banks, so as to facilitate trade and commence between the two countries.

“Our main goal here on our visitation to Nigeria is for economic cooperation. You can see that some of our entreprenuers are visiting the great country of Africa, that is the Federal Republic of Nigeria for the first time. We feel much more to invest in some of your potential mineral resources like Coal, tin, mines, metals, because I was told you have a lot of natural reserves. But apart from oil and natural gas, for the others mineral areas, you have not started greatly in modern cultivation. I could still remembered the nut pea seed in Kano and Cocoa in South West, but since you found oil in 1956, and then especially in 1970, when the price of oil somehow rose up. I hope I should say agriculture was abandoned. The mainstay of the country is now oil and natural gas. So we have some of our entrepreneurs who are here for the promotion of agriculture,” An said.

Earlier the Institute of Debt Recovery Practitioners of Nigeria (IDRPN), had predicted an imminent collapse of three banks in the country, because they have no good debt recovery strategy in place.

According to the institute, banks are the problems in the matters relating to debt, because of their accumulated interest rates.

They also faulted the bank debtor collateral arrangement, saying that the collateral has never been effective just as documents are never perfected.

An, who was the former Political Counsellor, Change d’ Affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria and the Gambia, said that Nigeria was one of China’s trade ally in the world, noting that in Africa, Nigeria was the second biggest trade partner with the Republic of China.

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