Cross-border security payments get boost as NGX, PAPSS sign MoU

Cross-border securities transactions across African capital markets has received significant boost as Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) and Pan African Payments Settlement System (PAPSS) sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to integrate the payments system into the capital markets.

The MoU signed in a virtual ceremony saw attendance from notable individuals including the President, Afreximbank, Professor Benedict Oramah and Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Nigeria, Mr Lamido Yuguda; Chairman, NGX, Mr. Abubakar Mahmoud, among others.

The Chief Executive Officer, NGX, Mr Temi Popoola while giving his remarks said that integrating PAPSS into the cross-border capital market framework will fix issues with currency convertibility, reduce cost, shorten processing and settlement times and foster access to capital. “We hope that the success of this partnership will inspire other African nations to integrate with PAPSS to enable other member countries to benefit from improved efficiency.”

Also speaking, the Chief Executive Officer, PAPSS, Mike Ogbalu III said, “With the signing of this MOU with our strategic partner NGX, we expect more transactions to flow into our system, but we also expect more Central Banks to join the PAPSS infrastructure to extend the reach to millions more with the resultant positive impact on intra-African Trade.”

The President of Afreximbank, Professor Benedict Oramah, whilst giving his remarks noted that PAPSS came about as a recognition of the need to integrate payments for goods and services in Africa amid the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA). “Just as we want to ensure smooth settlements for goods, capital market integration is also critical.”

The Director General, SEC, Mr. Lamido Yuguda stated that the signing of the agreement was a significant milestone in line with the revised Capital Market Masterplan. “SEC will support all initiatives to enhance the integrity and efficiency of the capital market.”

Expressing his optimism about the potentials of the initiative, the Chairman, Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX Group), Alhaji (Dr) Umar Kwairanga said the agreement will open up new market opportunities to capital market operators across the continent while Group Chief Executive Officer, NGX Group, Oscar N. Onyema said “It has come at the right time when Africa wants to accelerate the implementation of AfCFTA.” “It will stimulate the development of intra-African securities trading.