Unclaimed dividends: SEC targets reduction via electronic offering
The introduction of electronic offering in the Nigerian capital market has been described as a major achievement that will help solve the problems of unclaimed dividends.
To this end, the rules have been developed and espoused to the market.
This was stated by Acting DG of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms. Mary Uduk, in an interview, at the weekend in Abuja.
Uduk said the SEC is excited about electronic offering and is in full support hence the need to develop the rules to guide its implementation.
According to her, “We believe that electronic offerings will help solve the problems of unclaimed dividends so it’s something we are backing seriously. Through electronic offerings we will not have the problems of identity as we had in previous listings.
“It has a lot of advantages, it means that people who are not close by during an offering can invest, we are able to get the data we need for regulation, the offering is more efficient and it is cost saving. It is something we are working on; the rules will soon be out for everyone to use.
The Acting DG said when it becomes operational, an investor in Ghana or South Africa can invest in the Nigerian capital market via electronic offering .
“That is the idea but when the exchanges finish putting it together, that is what will happen. Ours is to make the rules and regulate, but that’s the idea. We want to open up our market so that more people can invest from different parts of the world.
“We want a deeper, bigger, more attractive market. We think our economy is big enough to have a much bigger market. The capital market makes up less than 10 percent of the GDP of the country. If you look at other countries even South Africa, its over 100 percent of GDP. We believe we have a large room for expansion and that is what we are pursuing”, Uduk stated.
On e-filing, Uduk disclosed that the Commission is working hard to ensure it commences in the not too distant future.
She said, “we are in the process of deploying the software that will help with that. That will make filing more efficient, make it easier for capital market operators to send in returns to us and make the market more transparent”.