United States Consul General, F. John Bray has applauded the Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE) for successes over the years, especially for being ranked amongst the top five performers in 2017.
Bray who rang the closing bell at the floor of the market on Monday during a familiarization visit, commended the leadership for tireless efforts in meeting the needs of the Nigerian investor community and playing a critical role in Nigeria’s economic growth.
A report by CNN indicated that with a 43% rally in 2017, NSE was able to close the gap created since the slump in 2008.
However, Bray said: “I hope to learn firsthand how the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) is operated, hear about your successes and challenges in this exciting economy.
“I know that last year was a very successful year as the NSE was ranked amongst the top five performers in 2017; projections indicate that 2018 will be an equally successful year. Let’s hope that’s the case, for the growth of the NSE means more private capital in the local market for business expansion and new business start-ups”.
He said that the familiarization visit was part of U.S. government’s deep commitment to Nigeria’s private sector and economic growth.
“The U.S. Government maintains a limited number of Binational Commission (BNC) relationships with nations, demonstrating a high degree of friendship, trust, and cooperation. As one of our most important partners in Africa, Nigeria is one of those nations.
“During the Bi-National Commission (BNC) meetings in Abuja last November, Deputy Secretary of State John J. Sullivan pledged the United States committed to expanding cooperation with Nigeria as we look to the future.
“During his visit, the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Minister of Industry Trade and Investment, formalized the U.S. – Nigeria Commercial and Investment Dialogue that will help to develop stronger business networks between our countries and help frame subsequent discussions under our Trade and Investment Framework Agreement, to be led by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.
“This is a clear message that the United States (both the Government and the private sector) is committed to supporting Nigeria as it continues to find new avenues of economic growth and development. The more Nigeria’s economy grows, the better it is for both Nigerian and American businesses.
“You will all agree with me that open and transparent financial exchanges are an example of a society’s broader commitment to the rule of law and sanctity of contracts.
“To this end, I applaud leaders of the Nigeria Stock Exchange for your tireless efforts in meeting the needs of the Nigerian investor community and playing a critical role in Nigeria’s economic growth”.
Earlier, the Chief Executive Officer of NSE, Oscar Onyeama thanked the visitor and his entourage, stressing the need for improved collaboration between the NSE and the US Consul General’s office.
According to him, both countries stand to gain a lot by collaborating on several economic fronts.