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Stakeholders in the Nigerian capital market have underscored the importance of integrity, innovation, investors’ education and professionalism in building a virile capital market that will support sustainable economic growth.

At the investiture of the new president and sendoff for the immediate past president of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers in Lagos, capital market operators and regulators agreed on the need to reinvigorate investors’ education, enhance financial creativity and sustain the core ethics of trust and integrity to stimulate capital market growth.

Country and Regional Senior Partner, West Africa, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Mr Uyi Akpata, identified some of the factors militating against competitiveness of the Nigerian capital market to include high transaction cost and dearth of securities.

Akpata, who delivered a paper titled: “Exploring the Nexus between Capital Market Growth and Economic Development”, outlined that product development, financial literacy and investor education, among others, are some of the issues that must be addressed in order to enhance Nigerian capital market competitiveness.

According to him, operating in an environment of uncertainties required that the Nigerian capital market is tuned to adapt to the constantly evolving developments in the financial services space by focusing on product innovation and simplification and continued integration of business with technology.

He added that concerted efforts must be made to create a resilient bond market, create favourable business environment and push for regulatory reform.

Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki urged stockbrokers to take the values of their profession to the political space in order to move the country forward.

Obaseki explained that every professional stockbroker operates on the premise of my word is my bond and noted that Nigerian politicians needed to embrace this element of integrity in order to ensure economic growth and development.

He noted that his background in stockbroking over the years had contributed immensely to the efficiency of his administration.

“Those of us that have corporate background would find out that we are quite different from others as we have an obligation to deliver and under no circumstances must we fail to keep our promise,” Obaseki said.

He noted that the CIS had come a long way, pointing out that the repositioning that some leaders of the institute undertook over the years have started yielding fruits.

Obaseki commended the newly elected President, Mr Adedapo Adekoje and assured the institute of the support of his administration.

He also congratulated the entire stockbroking community on the milestones recorded over the years despite the challenges in the operating environment.

Acting Director General, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms Mary Uduk, urged stockbrokers to do more to take investor education to people at the grassroots rather than concentrating their activities in urban areas.

Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Mr Oscar Onyema said the Exchange would always support initiatives aimed at enhancing the growth of the capital market.

“We at the Nigerian Stock Exchange are going to be firmly supportive of the new administration and the institute,” Onyema said.

Chairman, Association of Stockbroking Houses of Nigeria (ASHON),Chief Patrick Ezeagu, also assured that ASHON would continue to support the Institute to attain greatness.

“ASHON is very delighted to be a part of the Institute because we are like the other part of the Institute, we shall extend the same level of cooperation and support to the new president. It is very important that we must work together to take the Institute to greater heights,” Ezeagu said.

In his acceptance speech, Adekoje expressed gratitude to the stockbrokers for the confidence reposed in him and urged them to support his administration in order to move the market forward.

Earlier, CIS immediate past president, Mr  Oluwaseyi Abe thanked the stockbrokers for their support during his administration, noting that many achievements were recorded during his tenure, including the newly acquired corporate office at Ikoyi, stand-alone-certification programme for stockbrokers and sustained initiatives to attract the youths to stockbroking profession among others.

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