President Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI)

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Membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) allows Nigeria to attract additional insurance capacity to help attract investments

Nigeria becomes a full member country at an opportune time. It joins ahead of others that are fast-tracking membership given the trade and investment insurance challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic and also recognizing the potential post-pandemic opportunities.

President Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI)
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  • Nigeria contributed US$14.1 million to ATI’s capital in 2019 with African Development Bank’s (AfDB) financial support and fully completed its membership process through the ratification of the ATI’s Treaty.
  • Membership in ATI provides African countries with additional trade and investment insurance capacity, which helps cushion against the negative economic impacts of COVID-19.
  • ATI expects an estimated US$138 million in additional capital from prospective new shareholders in the coming months.

This week, H.E. President Buhari signed the instrument of ratification to the African Trade Insurance Agency’s (ATI) treaty. This finalises Nigeria’s membership in ATI in a process that began some years ago. Membership in ATI allows Nigeria to attract additional insurance capacity to help attract investments and it also increases ATI’s capacity to support sovereign and commercial transactions in the country.

Ultimately, Nigeria benefits because effective risk mitigation is vital to increasing investments and trade flows.

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Nigeria’s membership comes at a critical time for the economy as a sharp drop in oil prices due to a COVID-related one-third decrease in demand has impacted the country’s spending plans. The IMF predicts that falling oil prices will halve Nigeria’s export earnings to US$26 billion, which traditionally accounts for 90% of the government’s budget.

African Trade Insurance Agency is well-positioned to support African countries through the pandemic. In the last three years, ATI has helped crowd-in nearly US$3 billion of investments to several African countries. With ATI’s sovereign and sub-sovereign credit wrap solutions, governments and state-owned enterprises have been able to obtain competitively priced and longer-term financing.

In Nigeria, ATI has already provided significant support in the country’s oil and gas sector covering oil traders as well as in the financial sector insuring financial institutions.

Read Also:  Mom’s Aloe Enters Nigeria’s Juice and Beverage Market

“As one of the largest economies in Africa with a vibrant private sector, ATI looks forward to working with the Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank, local financial institutions and corporate traders to support Nigeria’s economic diversification plans and its post-COVID recover,” noted Benjamin Mugisha, ATI’s Chief Underwriting Officer.

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As an important strategic partner, the African Development Bank (AfDB) has played a significant role in funding the membership participation of several African countries. Between 2010 and 2020, AfDB has provided US$70 million to fund the shareholding of seven African governments – Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Mali, Nigeria, South Sudan and Zimbabwe.

In the coming months, five countries are expected to become fully-fledged members while an existing member state indicated its intention to increase its capital contribution. These countries will cumulatively benefit from US$91 million in financial support from the African Development Bank and the European Investment Bank, which is the African Trade Insurance Agency’s other strategic partner.

Furthermore, the recently held General Meeting approved three new membership applications worth US$47 million, demonstrating ATI’s ability to mobilize international support to implement its development mandate and support African countries’ economic recovery from the COVID-19 global pandemic.

ATI was founded in 2001 by the African States to cover the trade and investment risks of companies doing business in Africa. ATI predominantly provides Political Risk, Credit Insurance and, Surety Insurance.

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In 2019, ATI closed the year with exposures of US$6.4 billion and continued to post record results for the eighth consecutive year with 132% growth on the net profit over 2018 owing to strong demand for ATI’s insurance solutions from the international financial sector and from African governments.

Since its inception, ATI has supported US$62 billion worth of investments and trade into Africa. And for over a decade, ATI has maintained an ‘A/Stable’ rating for Financial Strength and Counterparty Credit by Standard & Poor’s, and in 2019, ATI obtained an A3/Stable rating from Moody’s.

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President Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) - Brand SpurPresident Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) - Brand Spur

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President Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) - Brand SpurPresident Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) - Brand Spur

Latest News

Hong Kong Productivity Council Theme of the Year 2021: “Make Smart Smarter”

  • Smarter Era of Intelligent Manufacturing Launch Ceremony
  • Witnesses New Milestone for Reindustrialisation in Hong Kong


HONG KONG SAR - Media OutReach - 26 February 2021 - The Hong Kong Productivity Council (HKPC) launches a series of activities in 2021 themed "Make Smart Smarter". The campaign with "Smarter Era of Intelligent Manufacturing Launch Ceremony" was kicked off today, revolving around the theme of "reindustrialisation".


President Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) - Brand Spur

The "Smarter Era of Intelligent Manufacturing Launch Ceremony" was officiated together by Dr David Chung, Under Secretary for Innovation and Technology, HKSAR Government (fourth from left); Mr Clemente Contestabile, Consul General of Italy in Hong Kong (third from right); Ms Rebecca Pun, Commissioner for Innovation and Technology, HKSAR Government (second from right); Dr Daniel Yip, Chairman of the Federation of Hong Kong Industries (third from left); Mr Roberto Leone, Managing Director of NiRoTech Limited (first from right); Mr Willy Lin, Chairman of HKPC (fourth from right); Mr Mohamed Butt, Executive Director of HKPC (second from left) and Mr Edmond Lai, Chief Digital Officer of HKPC (first from left).


Co-organised by the Federation of the Hong Kong Industries (FHKI), this spotlight event exhibited and introduced an excellent example of reindustrialisation whose research and development were undertaken by HKPC. Gaining support from the Innovation and Technology Bureau and funding support from the R&D Cash Rebate Scheme of the Innovation Technology Commission of the HKSAR Government, production has been successfully commenced in NiRoTech Limited (NiRoTech), a local intelligent security product manufacturer.


This smart production line, named the "OWL" intelligent production line, gives into full play the characteristics of an owl's wisdom, piercing eyes, flexible body, soft neck (360o vision) and agile movement. These perfectly echo the key features of this intelligent production line which has high flexibility, excellent agility to cater for different production needs, stringent and precise production capacity, as well as non-stop operation. Five key "S.M.A.R.T" elements: Speed, Multi-function, Accuracy, Reliability and Traceability, can be seen in this production line offering edges of intelligence and efficiency enhancement.


In order to effectively respond to Hong Kong manufacturers' demands on production space, the "OWL" production line adopts a U-shape compact layout design and incorporates the beauty of the "Industry 4.0" (i4.0) lean manufacturing "vision", significantly reducing the factory area to meet the unique land constraints of Hong Kong. NiRoTech's smart factory only occupies 10,000 square feet, saving 50% of the land. It is also equipped with 12 robots and large amount of customised intelligent automation systems and digital technologies. Compared with traditional manual production, the overall production capacity increases by 1.5 times.


Mr Willy Lin, Chairman of HKPC, and Dr Daniel Yip, Chairman of FHKI, were joined by Mr Clemente Contestabile, Consul General of Italy in Hong Kong; Dr David Chung, Under Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Ms Rebecca Pun, Commissioner for Innovation and Technology; Mr Roberto Leone, Managing Director of NiRoTech; as well as Mr Mohamed Butt, Executive Director of HKPC and Mr Edmond Lai, Chief Digital Officer of HKPC, for the launch of the ceremony.


In his welcoming address, Mr Willy Lin, Chairman of HKPC, said, "HKPC is committed to offering staunch support for Hong Kong SMEs in technology R&D and technical aspects, with the aim of creating value for the industrial development of enterprises with state-of-the-art technologies. The 'OWL' intelligent production line is an excellent example of applying innovative technologies that also fits perfectly with HKPC's theme of this year 'Make Smart Smarter'. As owl represents wisdom, by being smarter and using innovative technologies such as IoT, AI, big data, intelligent robots and smart production processes to unleash production opportunities of i4.0, it will certainly scale up productivity and contribute to successful reindustrialisation in Hong Kong, thus achieving the goal of 'Make Smart Smarter'".


He continued, "It is really encouraging to see this 'reindustrialisation' example witnessing the concerted efforts of the Government, industries, business chambers and HKPC to promote reindustrialisation in Hong Kong! HKPC sincerely urges various sectors to work together to accelerate reindustrialisation for the swift recovery of Hong Kong economy and to ensure the "Made-in-Hong Kong" brand to continue to shine bright in the international arena -- Make Smart Smarter".


Dr David Chung, Under Secretary for Innovation and Technology, said, "the Government has been actively promoting 'reindustrialisation' in recent years by providing support in infrastructure, finance, technology and talents in order to create new area of growth and great job opportunities which would help alleviate Hong Kong's competitiveness. I wish to see more enterprises 'Make Smart Smarter', and make good use of these opportunities provided by I&T, as well as the support from the Government, to work and contribute together in turning Hong Kong into an international I&T hub".


Dr Daniel Yip, Chairman of FHKI said, "This collaboration of HKPC and NiRoTech serves as a valuable reference for industrialists on how to integrate i4.0 into production lines to enhance efficiency, elevating their confidence to set up high value-added manufacturing facilities in Hong Kong. With comprehensive policy support and HKPC's professional consultative service, FHKI believes that more Hong Kong manufacturers will join the force of 'reindustrialisation' by pursuing technological advancement and setting up smart manufacturing plants locally, taking the Hong Kong industries into a new era".


The "OWL" intelligent production line integrates the smart adoption of advanced robots with machine vision, smart electrical and mechanical devices, laser processing and sensor technologies. Also, by incorporating AI, IoT, human machine interface, real-time data collection and data analytic technologies, it ensures the full automation and digitalisation of production, assembly and monitoring to achieve big data analytics. Apart from three technologies whose patents are soon to be applied, the project also assists NiRoTech's business planning in exploring the emerging markets and grasping new opportunities.


Mr Roberto Leone, Managing Director of NiRoTech, said, "Mechatronic Manufacturing in Hong Kong: our strategy was clear from the start when we sought HKPC's assistance for help to realise intelligent production. For some, this goal was still immature and very difficult to achieve, especially with Hong Kong being chosen as our operation hub. Today we can proudly say we have achieved it with the system in Hong Kong operating satisfactorily as schedule. Despite there are challenges as the COVID-19 pandemic was affecting all in 2020, the result is now vividly in front of us, and we can touch it. Yet this is only the first step of a long journey".


For more details about "Make Smart Smarter", please visit the dedicated website: https://smarter.hkpc.org/en/index.html


About Hong Kong Productivity Council

The Hong Kong Productivity Council (HKPC) is a multi-disciplinary organisation established by statute in 1967, to promote productivity excellence through integrated advanced technologies and innovative service offerings to support Hong Kong enterprises. HKPC is the champion and expert in facilitating Hong Kong's reindustrialisation empowered by i4.0 and e4.0 -- focusing on R&D, IoT, big data analytics, AI and Robotic technology development, digital manufacturing, etc., to help enterprises and industries upgrade their business performance, lower operating costs, increase productivity and enhance competitiveness.


The Council is a trusted partner with comprehensive innovative solutions for Hong Kong industries and enterprises, enabling them to achieve resources and productivity utilisation, effectiveness and cost reduction, and enhanced competitiveness in both local and international marketplace. It offers SMEs and startups immediate and timely assistance in coping with the ever-changing business environment, accompanying them on their innovation and transformation journey.


In addition, HKPC partners and collaborates with local industries and enterprises to develop applied technology solutions for value creation. It also benefits a variety of sectors through product innovation and technology transfer, with commercialisation of multiple market-driven patents and technologies, bringing enormous opportunities abound for licensing and technology transfer, both locally and internationally.

For more information, please visit HKPC's website: www.hkpc.org.


President Buhari finalises Nigeria’s membership in African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) - Brand Spur
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