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Oceanic Bank, Britain partner on project financing

Posted by By SEUN ADESIDA on 2008/06/09 | Views: 1665 |

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Oceanic Bank, Britain partner on project financing


Days after the visit of the Lord Mayor of City of London, Mr. David Lewis to Nigeria, strong indications have emerged that the request of Oceanic Bank to partner with Britain on training and project financing would be granted.

Days after the visit of the Lord Mayor of City of London, Mr. David Lewis to Nigeria, strong indications have emerged that the request of Oceanic Bank to partner with Britain on training and project financing would be granted.

Chief Executive of the bank, Dr. (Mrs.) Cecilia Ibru had listed areas of mutual cooperation between the bank and Britain to include: Customized training for Oceanic Bank Group staff by Londonmet and other providers; Joint project financing (Oceanic Bank and UK businesses and investors) and also Capacity building through sponsored internships for Oceanic Bank staff.

The bank boss also highlighted management exchange visits, business referrals and sharing of best practices among many other areas of partnership. While commending the management and staff of Oceanic Bank for their invaluable contributions to the development of the Nigerian economy, Lewis assured that the relationship between the two countries would be mutually beneficial. He assured that the partnership request would be positively looked into, describing Oceanic Bank as a dynamic bank with a passion to building a stronger Nigeria.

Highlighting capacity building for private sector and education as other possible areas of partnership, Lewis said partnership is indeed needed to achieve the nation’s vision 2020.
He also said the city of Lagos will not become the financial hub unless a massive investment is made in education, training and qualification (ETQ).

Ibru said: "I believe that your visit to Nigeria, the Heart of Africa will help to cement further the long relationship that exists between Nigeria and the United Kingdom, particularly between the cities of Lagos and London which share similar characteristics"

In her speech titled; Training and Capacity Building in a Changing She advised that partnership between Nigeria and Britain should go beyond trade and finance and include other areas such as policy formulation and implementation. "Britain should help us in ensuring full implementation of policies. It is not as if we do not know what to do to get certain things right, we are restrained by certain policies. I think this is where Britain should come in and help us. An example is in the area of power generation.

The banks are generating more than enough power for their operations on individual basis. But an enabling policy would cause the banks to collaborate on power generation and in the process cut costs.", Dr. (Mrs.) Ibru said. In his own remarks, Mark Bickerton, Director of student recruitment and international development at the Londonmet Metropolitan University (Londonmet), co-facilitators of the session said that Nigeria is growing very fast but still needs professionally and well trained experts to anchor and drive the growth process.

He added that British institutions are ready to partner with Nigerian banks towards achieving both Vision 2020 and FSS 2020 agenda. He encouraged the establishment of stronger links between Londonmet graduates currently working in Nigeria and their alma matta. On the recent directive from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) that all banks in the domestic economy adopt a uniform year end, Mrs. Ibru stressed that the adoption would breed more sanity in the banking sector and really place banks in their proper ranking.

Lord Mayor of London Mr. Lewis in his speech described Nigeria as the financial power house of West Africa. He said Nigeria has the skills, capacity and market size to become Africa’s financial hub adding that Nigerians are creative and hardworking. Chairman of the event, Mr. David Steven in his opening remarks said that Britain remains an important partner in Nigeria’s quest to be the African financial hub by 2020.

Mr. Steven who is the Managing Director River Path Associates stressed that Nigeria‘s vision of becoming Africa’s financial hub is hinged on quality education and training. According to him, Nigeria is growing very fast but still needs professionally and well trained experts to anchor and drive the growth process adding that British Institutions would like to do more in training Nigerians.

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