On Friday the FG signed investment agreements with Afreximbank, Bank of Industry and the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority for the creation of special economic zones in the country. The signing, according to President Buhari, will make the Nigeria SEZ Investment Company (NSEZCO) become fully operational. The FG set up NSEZCO as a vehicle for participating in public-private partnerships involving Federal and State governments and local and foreign private investors to develop new special economic zones all over the country, offering world class infrastructure and facilities at competitive costs. The projects in the pilot phase include Enyimba Economic City, Funtua Cotton Cluster and Lekki Model Industrial Park.

The MTN Group is ready to sell its shares in Jumia through an IPO that the online retailer is planning in New York this year. The telco firm may raise as much as $600 million (₦215 billion) to pay down debt from the IPO that could value Jumia at about $1.5 billion, a source familiar with the matter told Bloomberg. Though both firms declined to comment on the issue as it was reported last August that MTN had been weighing a listing of its shares in the online retailer. Jumia, a private company, is valued at more than $1 billion, according to research firm CB Insights.

Investment firm, Blackstone Group, is withdrawing from a $5 billion pact with Aliko Dangote five years after pledging the commitment. The firm is also exiting from its Africa subsidiary, Black Rhino Group, after selling it back to the management. Dangote had made a commitment to invest the fund by 2019 alongside Blackstone, which they committed to the investment through Black Rhino, but the financial support, focused on sub-Saharan energy projects, stopped a year ago.

The FIRS has appointed Sterling Bank as a collecting agent to recover taxes from 2,933 defaulting companies. A letter from Tunde Fowler, the FIRS chairman, sent to Abubakar Suleiman, Sterling’s MD, informed the bank of the failure of 2,933 listed companies to comply with provisions of the tax laws by not paying taxes due to the FIRS. The letter, seen by The Punch, was titled, ‘Letter of substitution appointing your bank as collecting agent and notice for release of bank statement and other financial records of the following attached companies.’ The FIRS also informed the bank that failure to comply fully with the notice was an offence punishable under the various tax laws and the criminal code.