By Chioma Obinagwam
The International Monetary Fund (IMF), has said that although confidence in Nigeria’s economy is fragile, the country is still an investors’ destination.
The Senior Financial Sector Expert, Debt and Capital Market Instruments Division, Monetary and Capital Markets Department, IMF, Miriam Tamene, stated during a visit of IMF Team to Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in Abuja.
According to her: “At the Annual meetings of IMF, we were pleasantly surprised when we saw many investors interested in the Securities Market in Nigeria. A lot of people thought that Nigeria is still investors’ destination. The main concerns most of them had was the fear that they might not be able to take out their money anytime they want to hence they are being very watchful.”
Tamene disclosed that at the last IMF Meetings, the Fund was pleasantly surprised to receive numerous indication of interest by investors eager to invest in Nigeria.
She, however, stated that many of them still nurse the fear that they may not be able to retrieve their funds anytime they decide to exit.
“Investors are interested in Nigeria, but with difficulties they had in getting their money out recently, that confidence is not there yet. It has improved though, but they are still watching. It is still so much fragile and not what they can take for granted just yet,” she added.
She also enjoined Monetary and regulatory authorities in Nigeria to roll out policies that would bring down the inflation rate in the country as well as increase access to domestic funds in order to ensure that the economy attains further growth in 2018
In his remarks, Acting Director General of SEC, Dr. Abdul Zubair said the future outlook appeared good as several initiatives had already been rolled out by the SEC which will help to grow the capital market and increase investors’ confidence, adding that in the long term, more initiatives will be rolled out to ensure that Nigerian capital market remains one of the best performing in the world.
The IMF Team were in Nigeria for consultations to get update on developments covering all the financial and other key sectors of the Nigerian economy. The report of their consultations is expected to be presented to the IMF Board in February 2018.