The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Nigeria has commended the Nigerian Exchange Limited, the Central Securities Clearing System and other capital market stakeholders for professionally working to develop the Market while pulling through the challenges brought by COVID-19 Pandemic and its variants.
Director General of the SEC, Mr. Lamido Yuguda, who spoke at a meeting with Capital Market Stakeholders in Abuja Wednesday, said the NGX had been playing a very significant role in the Nigerian capital market, and as such, the Commission remained supportive of the NGX in the key role it plays towards developing the market.
Yuguda said the Commission was aware that the advancement of new-generation information technologies, the rapid innovation of financial instruments and the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic are gradually transforming the operations of capital markets through the introduction of sound initiatives in the financial industry eco-system.
He explained: “The past two years have been challenging for the Nigerian capital market, which is largely a reflection of the Pandemic-related unexpected challenges in global markets. However, the NGX has continued to deploy capable resources to tackle elements militating against the market’s growth.
“You will agree with me that the efforts made and gains achieved in this regard are as a result of the collective efforts of various stakeholders in the Nigerian capital market, including the commission and the NGX Ltd. This emphasizes the importance of collaboration on the growth of our market”, he added.
Yuguda specifically said the launching of the Smart Surveillance System and X-Mobile App for retail trading; upgrading of the X-Issuer Platform to further enhance market integrity; and the X-Public Offer initiatives are highly commendable achievements that support our common goal of building a world-class capital market.
He, therefore, commended the NGX, the CSCS and other stakeholders for professionally working to develop the Market while pulling through the challenges brought by COVID-19 Pandemic and its variants.
While applauding their efforts, the SEC boss reminded them of the challenging task ahead and new threats brought forth by Fintech and what is expected from stakeholders to consolidate on the achieved gains while making necessary adjustments to improve market practices and remain vigilant against potential risks.
Yuguda stressed: “We all have a common interest in developing a healthy, viable and world-class capital market. At the bottom of the work we do at the SEC, is investor protection. While trying to look at the rules we should not forget that the ultimate goal of the commission is to have a fair and transparent market that is fair to investors”.
He reiterated that as the apex regulator of the capital market with a mandate to develop the market, SEC will continue to support all efforts aimed at making the markets fairer, more efficient and more transparent.
In his opening remarks, Chief Executive Officer of NGX Limited, Mr. Temi Popoola said there had been strong growth and market interactions in recent times, including the maiden e-offering in the market, due to collaborative efforts of stakeholders.
Popoola emphasized the need for education in the technology sector in the country adding that as a market it is time to put all hands on deck to tap the potentials in that sector.
He explained: “A lot of opportunities exist for the capital market .Technology can be used to address the capital formations in the market and we are making progress in tapping that.
“We are on a digitalisation drive and we have started with the MTN offer which was done electronically, we need to improve on that going forward. That is the only way to unlock the demography of young Nigerians that are technology savvy. We are collaborating with relevant stakeholders to ensure what’s best for the ecosystem. We are exploring ways to strengthen the entire market infrastructure”, the NGX boss added.
Also speaking, Managing Director/CEO of CSCS, Mr. Haruna Jalo-Waziri, welcomed the collaboration between markets, regulators and tiger stakeholders saying that the aim is to simplify the marker and give investors the experience they deserve to ensure they keep coming back.
He said: “The market is changing, and with technology a lot of the ways we were operating is also changing and we look forward to better market and operations.”