First halal commodities fund launched in Nigeria

A Nigeria’s non-interest capital market player, Marble Capital Limited, on Wednesday launched Marble Halal Commodities Fund to deal in agro-economic and extractive sectors.

The commodities fund is the first of its kind to be approved by Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, the capital market regulator in the country.

The new asset class, an initial three billion naira fund consists of 30,000,000 units at N100 per unit at par. But it can be increased subject to the approval of the SEC.

The fund which primarily invests in commodities-linked instruments, operates based on the principles of Shari’ah and as such only invests in halal-certified investment instruments.

Speaking at the launch of the fund in Lagos, the Executive Commissioner for Operations, Securities and Exchange Commission, Dayo Obisan, noted that the launch of the fund would play a key role in the attainment of the 2015–2025 Nigerian Capital Market Master Plan of the Commission.

Obisan noted that one of the cardinal points was for 25 per cent of the market capitalisation to come from non-interest areas such as Marble Halal Commodities Fund.

The Chief Executive Officer, Marble Capital Limited, Akeem Oyewale, said that the fund would enhance product diversification in the Nigerian economy while preventing the loss of investments to Ponzi schemes and phoney crowdfunding programmes.

“The main objective of the fund is to provide investors with income diversification and generate returns by investing in diverse halal-compliant instruments. In addition, the fund would also contribute to the economic growth of the country. We believe that we will be able to formalise a lot of non-formal agricultural investments and that would allow investors to scale investment opportunities.

“The Marble Halal Commodities Fund is open to both retail and institutional investors and compliant with the PenCom guidelines for mutual fund investments. The minimum amount required for investment is N50,000,” said Oyewale.

Earlier in his address, the Chairman, Marble Capital Limited, Ali Ango, said the fund would be invested in a series of commodities-linked instruments, including gold and precious metals among others.

“The fund is forward-looking and will be able to adapt to these asset classes as they become available and are approved by the regulators. The launch was timely, especially, coming from the raging floods that ravaged Nigeria last year, prompting commodities exchanges not only to prioritize agriculture production but also processing and the act of off-taking which can add value. The Federal Government has agreed to support the farmers who lost a lot last year. This is why the launch is timely.”

Providing more insights about the fund, an analyst in the Marble Capital, Ibrahim Jimoh, said “There is 90- day period after which the funds invested can be redeemed. He stressed that N50,000 was the minimum which translates to 500 units at the rate of N100 per unit.”

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