Shortage of investment banks affecting economic growth ― AIHN

Feyisayo Popoola

The Association of Issuing Houses of Nigeria has said the lack of sufficient investment bankers and banks in Nigeria is stunting the growth of the nation’s economy.

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The Head, Coronation Capital Markets, a member of the AIHN, Aigbovbiose Aig-Imoukhuede, who gave the keynote address at the association’s inaugural annual dinner in Lagos, stressed the need for more investment banks in the country.

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According to him, the famous Wall Street in the United States has over 120,000 investment bankers, who contribute significantly to the US economy, while Nigeria has only 500.

He said a lot of people often underrated the importance of investment banking to economic growth.

“Investment banks are known for the ability and capacity to solve economic challenges of countries. Nigeria has more of retail banks; not that they are not important, but when we actually speak about a nation’s economic development, we speak about investment banking,” he added.

According to him, the main goal and responsibility of a retail bank is to  help effect sales, support lending, process transactions and payments, while the functions of an investment bank are to support private equity and originate capital formation.

Aig-Imoukhuede described issuing houses as the economic engine that helps to finance growth in terms of short- and long-term capital development required by companies and government to take ideas from visions and dreams into reality.

He called on the AIHN, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and other financial bodies to look into the issue, saying, “Something has to be done. Though the cost of training an investment banker is high, the cost of not having investment bankers is higher and critical to economic growth.”

He stated that the country would benefit more from the issuing house sector, adding that the domestic capital that would be created in the investment banking sector could do great things for the economy.

The Chairman, AIHN, Sonnie Ayere, said the association would not only promote the transformation of the country, but would also employ professional competence of its members to help achieve the transformation.

He stated that the association would continue to deploy innovation in its operations, adding that they were confident they would shape the industry into a more vibrant one.

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