Some months ago, the current executive management of the Nigerian Export Import Bank (NEXIM) under the leadership of Abba Bello clocked 6 years in office. To this end, it is key to capture the initiatives that underpin the remarkable turnaround of the export bank.
NEXIM has carved a niche for itself, thereby growing to be an institution that has engendered an export strategy. Established in 1991, the Nigerian ExportImport Bank (NEXIM) has ensured sustainable growth of non oil exports.
Designed as an export credit agency, NEXIM provides finance and risk bearing services to exporters and has over the years played a leading role in defining the country’s export market.
Recently, The Nigerian Export-Import Bank’s efforts to improve regional trade and promote bulk movement of commodities through the Nigerian waterways have received a boost with the unveiling of navigational charts of the lower River Niger in Abuja.
Kudos to Mr. Abba Bello, who was appointed in April 2017, by the Buhari administration. Under the leadership Mr. Abba Bello, a seasoned banker with over 28 years’ experience, the NEXIM team inherited a huge portfolio of non-performing loans, weak internal processes, dwindling confidence in the bank by partners – regional and international- and a lack of professionalism in the conduct of the bank’s business.
About six years now, Mr. Bello and his team has ensured a remarkable turnaround at NEXIM. He has implemented a strategic re-alignment of business focus; aggressive debt recovery drive; and execution of bold initiatives to foster its impact on non-oil exports.
Under Abba Bello management, NEXIM has broken new ground and repositioned the bank as a catalyst for growing the country’s non-oil export market.
With the new initiative with a sister agency, the survey and charting, which was jointly undertaken by hydrographers of the Nigerian navy and Nigerian Inland Waterways Agency with financial support from NEXIM and Afreximbank, was meant to guarantee navigational safety of the lower River Niger channel to boost hinterland and coastal trade.
The managing director of NEXIM Bank, Abba Bello, in his remarks, said the Nigeria Export–Import Bank, being a trade policy bank, had embarked on the deliberate policy initiative “to bridge maritime infrastructure gaps towards lowering logistics cost to foster trade with the promotion of the Regional Sealink Project. As a Special Purpose Vehicle under a public-private-partnership framework, Sealink essentially aims to enable the Bank to significantly broaden national export basket’’
Observers have at several times praised the efforts of NEXIM, who is collaborating with the Nigerian Navy and NIWA to support regional trade in Africa.
Abba has reiterated NEXIM’s commitment to provide support to serious investors with bankable projects to take advantage of the emerging business opportunities in the non-oil industry.
Interestingly, NEXIM is working with the Ministry of finance, budget and national planning, to adopt the Regional Sealink Project.
This is a mandate NEXIM is pursuing to support initiatives that will promote and attract private sector investments in maritime logistics infrastructure.
The bank is also collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Transportation who is committed to the successful attainment of the overall objective of the project.
NEXIM under Abba has not derailed from the Federal Government’s vision for the holistic and sustainable development of the non-oil export sector.
Olamide Adeniji is a member of the editorial team of TheScript Newspaper