The Vice-President and Treasurer of the World Bank, Ms. Arunma Oteh, gave the assurance that the World Bank Group would support efforts to make Nigerian capital market world class market.
The former Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), who midwifed the 10-year Capital Market Master Plan, that is currently being implemented, said she remained passionate about making the Nigerian market world class, assuring she would use her position to achieve that task.
Oteh, who spoke during a visit to the management of FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange in Lagos, said building a world class market and keeping that market is key for the transformation of Nigeria.
“I do believe that building a world class market and keeping that market is key for the transformation of our nation. Whether it is making sure that the citizenry are financial discipline or whether it is providing medium to long term for new businesses for expansion, even if it is meritocracy, whether you are allocating resources for the right thing, the capital can do it. You can count on the World Bank and International Finance Corporation (IFC). What we ask are ideas that can stand any test. I do think we have such projects and I assured you of our support and my own personal support,” she said.
Oteh disclosed that to affirm the commitment of the World Bank to the development of the Nigerian capital market, the global financial institution has set up a fund that will expose Nigerian debts to investors around the world. The fund, according to her, is called the World Supporters Fund(WSF).
“ At the World Bank, we are prepared promote the Nigerian debt markets. We want to make sure that we place Nigerian debts in the hands of Eurobonds market investors you cannot imagine. And one of the things we have done is to set up the WSF where bonds issued in Naira could actually be placed with Japanese investors. Because the World Bank and IFC are triple ‘A’ rated, we are very keen to use that leverage we have to promote the market to investors around the World. We can do much more. There is potential for us to do much more,” Oteh said.
She commended the management of FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange, saying the platform has performed very well in transforming the fixed income sector of the nation’s capital market.
“Today I feel very proud that the baby that I helped to midwife has now become a genius that is top of the class. I can feel and see the passion and tenacity of the staff and management to take the market to the next level of excellence,” she said.
In his welcome address, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of FMDQ OTC, Mr. Bola Onadele.Koko said Oteh was instrument to the establishment of the platform when she was DG of SEC.
According to him, she did not only give the licence but also contributed to the framework and made significant input that laid the strong foundation which has taken FMDQ to its high level within two years in operations.