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9mobile seeks partnership with Cross River State Gov’t to digitalize operations, build data centre

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Nigeria’s innovative telecommunications company, 9mobile, has sought partnership with the Cross River State government to accelerate development and growth in the State via the digitalization of government operations and the construction of a state-of-the-art data centre.

This proposal was made by the Chief Executive Officer of 9mobile, Juergen Peschel, during a business meeting with the Governor of Cross River State, Senator Prince Bassey Otu, on the sideline of the International Cooperation and Investment Summit, which was held in Calabar recently.

Peschel informed the Governor that 9mobile is open to partnership with his administration and will offer simple, straightforward services of benefit to the State.

He presented details of the telco’s proposed partnership: “We propose to build a data center that will be instrumental in hosting any government data and form the basis of digitalizing administrative processes. This will be one of the enablers of improving security in the State and will be based on the ‘Build, Operate, and Transfer Model’. This centre will also help educate and partner with universities to deepen learning”.

He explained further that data centres are vital to global connectivity and the continuity of daily business operations.

He said that the benefits of having the data centre would be to support business applications and provide services such as data storage, management, backup and recovery, productivity applications, such as email, high-volume e-commerce transactions, powering online gaming communities as well as big data, machine learning, and artificial intelligence which will be beneficial to the State.

In addition, 9mobile also offered to provide electronic governance and contribute to the digitization efforts of the government, including the digitalization of the government’s administrative processes for better service delivery.

While receiving the 9mobile delegation, the State governor, Senator Prince Bassey Otu, said the State is an investment-friendly place and is an ideal hub for investment within the South-South zone. He praised 9mobile for being a worthy partner, saying he was pleased with the offer of further investment in the State through the proposed PPP projects.

Through participation in PPP, 9mobile will contribute its expertise, resources, and investment by bringing employment opportunities to Cross River State. Business owners and entrepreneurs get access to affordable and seamless connectivity.

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Business

SIFAX Shipping partners ECU Worldwide to boost LCL export

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By Seun Ibiyemi

SIFAX Shipping Company Limited, a subsidiary of SIFAX Group, has sealed a partnership deal with ECU Worldwide, the world’s number one LCL player, to boost export activities from Nigeria.

Less-than-Container Load (LCL) is one of two main types of containerised transportation services.

The other is Full-Container Load (FCL). LCL is optimal when an entire container isn’t filled up. LCL allows the transportation of small cargo volumes without paying for the whole container.

The partnership will help business owners and exporters whose consignments are less than container load to access the international market.

According to MD, SIFAX Logistics Company Limited,  Paul Linden, this service was offered in response to inquiries from various customers who are desirous of exporting their products but do not have the required huge volume.

He said, “We know that many SMEs and business owners are desirous of accessing the international market, but are hampered by their lack of large volume.

“This service is designed particularly to address this concern. It will boost Nigeria’s export and be a game changer for our small and medium-scale businesses. We have put all facilities in place to ensure the business runs smoothly in partnership with ECU Worldwide.”

AGM, SIFAX Shipping, Adekunle Owobamirin, noted that all arrangements have been perfected to make the service a success.

“Our partners from ECU have inspected our warehouse and we have already assigned dedicated staff who would work on this service.

“ECU Worldwide and SIFAX Shipping is the first consolidator partnership to offer dedicated LCL export services from Nigeria to the world. Our partners have established 2,400 direct trade lines with a presence in over 180 countries.

“This will allow all our customers to export their goods anywhere in the world,” Adekunle said.

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RIFAN applauds NAICOM,  IGP over compulsory insurance enforcement

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The Retail Insured Family Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), the country’s largest community of insurance consumers, has praised the Commissioner for Insurance, Olusegun Omosehin, and the Inspector General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, for their recent efforts to enforce mandatory third-party insurance.

RIFAN’s major aim is to restore public confidence in insurance policies.

This commendation follows a meeting on June 11, 2024, where Omosehin visited Egbetokun at Louis Edet House, Force Headquarters in Abuja to discuss the enforcement of compulsory third-party insurance.

Omosehin highlighted the illegality of driving without valid motor insurance and announced that the benefits attached to third-party insurance have increased to N3 million.

Responding to Omosehin’s request, Egbetokun committed to deploying the Deputy Inspector General of Operations to ensure the enforcement of this mandate.

RIFAN’s Director General, Ali Theophilus, expressed support for this initiative and indicated RIFAN’s readiness to collaborate on enforcement and public awareness.

He emphasised that proper enforcement could significantly boost premium income for the insurance industry, facilitating easier claims payments and enhancing public confidence in insurance.

He said getting the enforcement done is also in line with the Road Traffic Act for any vehicle plying Nigerian roads to have 3rd party motor insurance.

Theophilus commended the Inspector General of Police (IGP) for his proactive steps towards enforcing third-party motor insurance and urged him to extend this message of hope to all police officers and relevant law enforcement agents.

He emphasised that third-party insurance benefits every vehicle user, including law enforcement personnel, regardless of their career or social status.

He pointed out that many law enforcement officers neglect this insurance under the guise of “Esprit de Corps,” which does not cover damages in the event of an accident. This negligence costs the insurance industry over N15 billion annually, which could otherwise be added to premiums to facilitate claim payments.

Theophilus reiterated the importance of third-party insurance, explaining that while it does not cover personal vehicle damage directly, it covers damages caused to other vehicles due to negligence. This coverage can help settle such claims, benefiting all parties involved.

Furthermore, Theophilus urged the IGP to enforce licensing for insurance agents through an initiative he called “Operation Show Your Licence.” This would reduce the prevalence of fake agents and help NAICOM reach its goal of increasing licensed insurance agents to three million by the end of the year.

He called on the Nigeria Police Force and all law enforcement agents to join RIFAN to unite in restoring public confidence in the insurance industry. He stated RIFAN membership benefits, including easy access to claims payments, unique insurance covers, and professional advice etc.

Theophilus also announced plans to collaborate with underwriters to create a funeral insurance policy as an additional membership benefit, particularly in Southern Nigeria, where funeral expenses are significant. RIFAN plans to hold town hall meetings to educate grassroots communities about the importance of insurance.

Theophilus called on the IGP, law enforcement agencies, the Commissioner for Insurance, the Director General of NIA, and underwriters to register with RIFAN to help build the insurance industry of Nigeria’s dreams and restore public confidence in insurance.

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Afreximbank, First Bank sign $200m facility agreement to finance clients’ needs

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Afreximbank and First Bank of Nigeria(FBN) have signed a 200 million dollar facility agreement for financing the needs of FBN’s numerous clients.

The signing took place at the ongoing 31st Afreximbank Annual Meetings (AAM2024) in Nassau, The Bahamas, on Friday.

The facility will finance the needs of FBN’s numerous clients engaged in oil and gas and energy, manufacturing, telecommunications and associated infrastructure projects.

The parties who signed the agreement included Olusegun Alebiosu, Acting CEO, FBN, Awani Kanayo, Executive Vice- President, Intra-African Trade Bank (IATB), Afreximbank, and Viswanathan Shankar, CEO, Gateway Partners on behalf of African Credit Opportunity Fund.

The 31 AAM2024 is being held in Nassau, The Bahamas from June 12 to June 15, with the theme: “Owning our Destiny: Economic Prosperity on the Platform of Global Africa’’.

The AAM is taking place alongside the 3rd edition of the AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF2024).

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