Launch of The Nigerian Green Bond Market Development Programme

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

As the prime mover and champion of innovative and game-changing financial markets initiatives, FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange (“FMDQ” or the “OTC Exchange”), in partnership with Climate Bonds Initiative (“CBI”), Financial Sector Deepening Africa (“FSD Africa”) (all three (3) institutions referred to as the “Parties”), is making, what can be seen as one of its most significant contributions yet, to the development of the Nigerian non-sovereign debt capital markets (DCM), specifically the green bond market. The Parties are spearheading a 3-year Nigerian Green Bond Market Development Programme (the “Programme”) to, among others, create awareness and drive education required to integrate the principles of green financing into the Nigerian DCM, thereby facilitating the establishment and development of the green bond market in Nigeria. The Programme, more specifically, will support the development of guidelines and listing requirements for green bonds in Nigeria, develop a pool of Nigeria-based licensed verifiers to support issuers, facilitate engagement with extant and potential issuers and investors, and support broader DCM reforms that have/will have an impact on the non-government bond market in Nigeria.

In March 2018, the Parties formalised a partnership, which stemmed from the growing global recognition of the role sustainability plays in strengthening financial stability and supporting overall economic growth in a nation, through the signing of a Cooperation Agreement, to support the development of the Nigerian green bond market for a period of three (3) years. The partnership is aimed at, among other things, enabling the OTC Exchange garner the necessary support required to promote impact investing as entrenched under the sustainable finance pillar in the FMDQ Debt Capital Markets Development (DCMD) Project, and at providing the necessary tools to allow the OTC Exchange continually pursue an economic development agenda to reposition and organise the Nigeria DCM to access a global pool of long-term climate-related capital.

L-R: Senator Foster Ogola, Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Capital Markets; Ms. Mary Uduk, Ag. Director General, Securities and Exchange Commission; Ms. Laure Beaufils, British Deputy High Commissioner to Nigeria; Mr. Bola Onadele. Koko, MD/CEO, FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange; Dr. (Mrs.) Oluranti Adebule, Deputy Governor, Lagos State; Mr. Greg Jobome, Executive Director, Risk Management, Access Bank PLC; Ms. Justine Leigh-Bell, Director, Market Development, Climate Bonds Initiative; and Honourable Tajudeen Yusuf, Chairman, House Committee on Capital Markets at the Nigerian Green Bond Market Development Programme Launch, with the theme: The Rise of Green Bonds “Global Trends and the Opportunity for Nigeria” in Lagos, recently.

Subsequently, in June 2018, the Parties, supported by the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and Access Bank PLC (“Access Bank”), launched the Programme in a 4-day series of events, commencing with a Green Bond Bootcamp for key regulators and other major capital market participants focusing on the basics of green bonds, its pricing, and project identification methodologies required to foster green issues, then followed by a series of targeted roundtable sessions for investors, issuers and intermediaries respectively, to demystify the concept of green bonds as an alternative financing instrument for market stakeholders, and culminating in the official Launch Ceremony of the Programme on Thursday, June 7, 2018. The Ceremony brought together all the key financial market stakeholders (regulators, issuers, investors, intermediaries, inter alia) to discuss the concept of green bonds and the opportunity for Nigeria. Among those present at the Launch Ceremony were His Excellency, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, Governor, Lagos State, ably represented by the Deputy Governor, Lagos State, Dr. Idiat Oluranti Adebule, Honourable Minister of State for Environment, Mallam Ibrahim Usman Jibril, Chairman, House Committee of Capital Markets,

Honourable Tajudeen Yusuf, Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Capital Market, Senator Foster Ogola, Ag. Director-General, SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk, Deputy British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Ms. Laure Beaufils, Commissioner for Finance, Lagos State, Mr. Akinyemi Ashade, Director-General, Debt Management office (DMO), Ms. Patience Oniha, represented by Mr. Oladele Afolabi, Director, Portfolio Management Department, DMO, and Group Deputy Managing Director, Access Bank, Mr. Roosevelt Ogbonna, amongst other capital market operators.