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Nigeria’s SEC Opts for Virtual Parley as it Hosts its First Committee Meeting in 2020

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Nigeria’s capital market regulator the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced that its first Capital Market Committee (CMC) meeting in 2020 is scheduled to hold from Thursday August 20 to Friday August 21, 2020. The meeting, initially slated for April 2020 could not hold owing to the prevailing lockdown imposed by the Nigerian government.

The agency said that due to established protocols on COVID-19, the meeting will hold virtually through Zoom with key stakeholders in the capital market meeting on August 20, while a press briefing, on the outcome of the CMC meeting, will hold on August 21.

According to the SEC, “Attendance to both events is strictly by invitation. Invited participants will be sent unique links with which to join the meeting.”

The CMC was primarily established to serve as a medium for exchange of ideas among market stakeholders as well as an avenue for providing feedback to the SEC on how to continuously address challenges, improve market operations and enhance the regulatory framework. It is an industry-wide committee comprising members of the SEC, representatives of capital market operators and trade groups and other stakeholders. The CMC meets once every quarter.

During the meeting, issues bordering on implementation of the Ten Year Capital Market Master Plan, implementation of the Fintech Roadmap as well as other salient matters relating to the capital market and the economy would be discussed. Recall that the Commission had unveiled the ten-year Capital Market Master Plan (CMMP) in November 2014 and has continued to implement the initiatives, which are designed to reposition the Nigerian Capital Market as an attractive investment destination and a critical facilitator of capital formation for the accelerated growth and development of the Nigerian economy.

Some of the CMMP initiatives that have been implemented include; Direct Cash Settlement, regularisation of multiple subscriptions, dematerialization of share certificates, and the introduction of the e-Dividend Management System. The CMMP initiatives have helped in promoting transparency, protecting investors and enhancing market confidence. The objectives of the CMMP are also in consonance with the Federal Government’s economic strategy, focused on encouraging a private sector-led economy to drive inclusive growth.

Expected participants at the CMC meeting include Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of all registered capital market firms: Broker/Dealers, Investment Advisers, Custodians, Fund/Portfolio Managers, Receiving Banks, Issuing Houses, Rating Agencies, Registrars, Reporting Accountants, Trustees, and Capital Market Consultants, etc.); Chief Executive Officers of: the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE); National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD); FMDQ Group Plc; Africa Exchange Holdings (AFEX); Nigeria Commodity Exchange (NCX); Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS); as well as representatives of relevant financial sector regulatory agencies among others.

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