The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) recently announced a ban on the importation of maize/corn1. This ban adds maize to the list of 41 other products some of which include rice, cement, margarine, and palm kernel that had earlier been banned2. The embargo comes as a means to further encourage local production, stimulate economic growth as well as secure local jobs and livelihoods. Available data shows that Nigeria imported 400,000 tons of maize in 2019 the same as it did in 20183. However, forex restrictions on the importation of rice, coupled with the closure of the Nigerian land borders to neighboring countries, has seen the country move from a major importer to the largest producer of rice in Africa.4 By extension, it is expected that the addition of maize to the forex restriction list will help to stimulate its domestic production and thus reduce or eliminate dependence on imported maize. Consequently, this effort is also expected to limit domestic demand for forex and curb the exchange rate volatility.
August 12, 2020
Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 28)
This study examines the hedging effectiveness of portfolio investment diversification between developed and developing economies; with focus on the Nigerian stock asset vis--vis the stock assets of the United States (US) and United Kingdom (UK). Its main contribution is in the analysis of optimal portfolio diversification using optimal portfolio weight (OPW) and optimal hedging ratio (OHR). Empirical findings show that the OPW and OHR are low, which indicates impressive potential gains from combining Nigerian stock assets in an investment portfolio with US and UK stock assets. In addition, exchange rate volatility is found to pose stern limitation on the potential benefits of this portfolio diversification arrangement. It is therefore recommended that the monetary authority in Nigeria should pursue policies towards reducing exchange rate volatility to the barest minimum. This will possibly attract more investors from developed economies who might be willing to combine Nigerian stock in their investment portfolio to minimize portfolio risk.
This brief aims to deepen stakeholders understanding of the sources of funding and how money is allocated to and spent in the social sectors of health and education, which are critical for pro-poor growth and poverty alleviation.