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DMO targets retail investors in Lagos

by Business News Report

The Debt Management Office (DMO), on Thursday in Lagos held an awareness programme on Securities Issuance. Patience Oniha, the Director-General of DMO, said the aim was to sell the various existing Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) securities to the Nigerian public. Oniha said that the objective was to ensure that many more Nigerians became aware of the huge investment opportunities so they could take advantage of them. “The purpose of this gathering is to introduce DMO to the people. Some might have read one or two things about us in the newspapers, but the Nigerian people are a very important set of stakeholders we must engage.

“Also, we have to educate the general public about the various products that we offer. We are talking of investment products similar to shares, but this is the other side of shares. The needs of government are growing and becoming different, so, we need to get more stakeholders involved in what we are doing,” she said. Oniha said that the idea of getting more Nigerians to invest in government securities was to also promote and encourage financial inclusion. We do not want anybody outside of the banking system as much as possible. We want to encourage financial inclusion. It is good to keep bank accounts, but it is also good to get actively involved in the financial market, either by buying shares or bonds,” she said.

 According to her, the various FGN securities constitute the local component of government borrowings which go into providing some critical needs of the citizens. “As you know, government does borrow to execute projects. One of our objectives is to prove our ability to raise the funds that government will use to fund these projects that will benefit all of us. We will like you to support us by subscribing to our products so that we can transfer the funds to the government, ” she said. According to her, DMO is a government agency saddled with the responsibility of managing public debt, as managing debt involved borrowing.

 “While managing the public debt, we also want to ensure that it is sustainable,. so, there are some World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) tools that we use. We have a range of products like the FGN Bond, the Nigeria Treasury Bills, FGN Savings Bond, the Sovereign Sukuk and the Green Bond, ” she said. She said that the FGN savings bond was deliberately designed for the retail investors to benefit, while supporting government to raise funds and also supporting development of the financial market. Also speaking, Kayode Olayemi, Head, Business Development, CSL Stockbrokers Limited, which are the FGN Stockbrokers, said that it had become increasingly imperative to create awareness about government securities among retail investors. Olayemi said that ordinary Nigerians also deserve the opportunity to invest and benefit from the huge opportunities in FGN bonds.

He said that the FGN securities served as a benchmark for other private institutions to be able to issue their own debt securities.“Government securities also enhances the saving and investment opportunities of the populace, thereby, promoting financial inclusion, ” he said. Mr Adeyinka Sonekan, Divisional Head, Sales and Business Development, Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS ), commended the DMO for creating awareness on investable opportunities in government securities among ordinary Nigerians. Sonekan urged Nigerians to take advantage of the investment opportunities to key into the financial system and also improve their finances. (NAN)

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