Naira: EFCC Storms Bureau De Change Hub In Abuja

EFCC news logo
A file photo of the EFCC emblem.

 

Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Friday stormed Wuse Zone 4, Abuja, home to most bureau de change operators in the Federal Capital Territory,

A source said the raid was a covert operation to dislodge currency speculators who are alleged to be massively mopping up available foreign currencies.

The raid is said to be product of weeks of surveillance in which agents of the EFCC have been monitoring the activities of most of the Bureau de change operators in the Wuse 4 axis.

READ ALSO: We Are Working To Avert Naira’s Further Fall Against Dollar, CBN Assures Nigerians

The anti- graft agency is said to be working on intelligence that some forces with massive naira inflow have mobilized resources and are busy buying up available foreign currencies especially the United States dollar, to either hoard or smuggle the same out of Nigeria.

Some operatives of the Commission have also been spotted at major airports in the country, in what a source said is a coordinated nationwide operation that will be extended to all the major commercial cities such as Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt.

There has lately been a run on the value of the Naira with the currency exchanging for over N700 to a dollar.

The EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, was not immediately available for comment.

Senate Summons Emefiele As Naira Continues To Depreciate Against Dollar

A file photo of Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele

 

The Senate has resolved to summon the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Emefiele, to explain the reasons for the rapid depreciation of the value of the naira.

It has also mandated its Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions to assess the impact of CBN intervention funds meant to support critical sectors of the economy.

The Upper chamber is taking these resolutions after federal legislators considered a motion on the state of CBN Intervention funds and the free fall of the naira.

The sponsor of the motion Senator Olubunmi Adetunmbi bemoaned Nigeria’s economic challenges and calls for extraordinary measures to address them.

As of Thursday morning, the naira was exchanging for more than N700 to a dollar in the parallel markets.

No Plans To Withdraw Naira Notes From Circulation – CBN

 

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has dismissed reports that it intends to replace the naira notes in circulation with digital currency, the eNaira, in due course. 

CBN Director, Corporate Communication, Mr Osita Nwanisobi, said in a statement on Saturday that the reports were false.

According to him, the comment purportedly made during a stakeholders’ engagement in Asaba, Delta State on eNaira adoption, and on which the reports were based, was misconstrued.

He called on the general public to disregard the reports.

The CBN director explained the digital version of the naira was meant to complement the existing currency notes and therefore, would circulate simultaneously as means of exchange and store of value.

Mr Nwanisabi touted the benefits of the eNaira, stressing that apart from it safety and speed of use, it will give the underbanked and unbanked populace greater access to financial services, enhancing financial inclusion.

He urged members of the public and business owners to embrace the digital currency as it offers more possibilities.

The eNaira was formally launched into circulation by President Muhammadu Buhari in October last year.

Lawmakers Seek Re-Introduction Of Coins To Tackle Inflation

The House of Representatives chamber.

 

The House of Representatives has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria to reinforce the use of coins in the country, as part of efforts to tackle price inflation and stabilise the economy.

The matter was deliberated upon during plenary on Tuesday following a motion moved by a lawmaker, representing Toro Federal Constituency in Bauchi State, Umar Lawal.

It’s been decades since the use of coins was withdrawn in Nigeria.

I Am Not Calling For Naira Devaluation – Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo SAN delivers a speech during the Two-Day Mid-Term Ministerial Performance Review Retreat in the State House, Abuja on October 11, 2021. Photos: Tolani Alli
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo SAN delivers a speech during the Two-Day Mid-Term Ministerial Performance Review Retreat in the State House, Abuja on October 11, 2021. Photos: Tolani Alli

 

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said that he is not calling for the devaluation of the naira contrary to some reports that trailed his speech at the opening session of the mid-term ministerial performance review retreat at the presidential villa, Abuja on Monday.

Osinbajo in a statement issued by his spokesman, Laolu Akande, on Tuesday said he rather advocates a forex policy to curb corruption.

While noting that he has been opposed to the devaluation of the currency, the Vice President said those who have access to the dollars at N410 turn round to sell it were benefiting from the current exchange rate.

“Prof. Osinbajo is not calling for the devaluation of the Naira. He has at all times argued against a willy-nilly devaluation of the Naira,” the statement read.

“For context, the Vice President’s point was that currently, the Naira exchange rate benefits only those who are able to obtain the dollar at N410, some of who simply turn round and sell to the parallel market at N570.

“It is stopping this huge arbitrage of over N160 per dollar that the Vice President was talking about. Such a massive difference discourages doing proper business, when selling the dollar can bring in 40% profit!”

READ ALSO: How We Intend To Build A More Resilient Economy – Buhari

He also revealed the major issues confronting the Nigerian economy, stressing that how to improve the supply of foreign exchange is the major challenge facing the country’s economy.

Osinbajo explained that allowing the window of import and export would help improve the value of the naira.

“The real issue confronting the economy on this matter is how to improve the supply of foreign exchange, but this will not happen if we do not allow mechanisms like the Importers and Exporters window to work. If we allow this market mechanism to work as intended, we will find that the Naira will appreciate against the dollar as we restore confidence in the system,” he added.

CBN Warns Against Naira Abuse, Threatens To Prosecute Offenders

A file photo of naira notes.

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned Nigerians against abusing naira notes, especially at social gatherings.

Acting Director of Corporate Communications at the apex bank, Osita Nwanisobi, gave the warning in a statement on Tuesday.

“The attention of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has again been drawn to the activities of persons, who flagrantly abuse the legal tender by hurling wads of naira notes in the air and stamping on the currency at social functions,” he said.

“There have also been cases where people mishandle the naira, deface it, hawk the currency at parties and reject the currency in some instances.

“It should be stated that, contrary to the practice of these unpatriotic persons, it is neither cultural nor moral, for people to disrespect the currency which citizens trade in.”

The abuse of legal tender is common during social gatherings such as birthdays, weddings, and funerals where people spray naira notes to rejoice with celebrants.

This has now become a major source of concern for the nation’s financial regulator which says it will prosecute offenders in accordance with the law.

“For the avoidance of doubt, Section 21(3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007 (as amended) stipulates that ‘spraying of, dancing or matching on the naira or any note issued by the bank during social occasions or otherwise howsoever shall constitute an abuse and defacing of the naira or such note, and shall be punishable under the law by fines or imprisonment or both,” Nwanisobi stated.

According to him, the apex bank is collaborating with the Nigeria Police, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) to tackle the trend.

The CBN spokesman, therefore, warned Nigerians, especially those at social functions to desist from disrespecting the naira or risk being arrested by law enforcement agencies.

He described naira notes as Nigeria’s legal tender and symbol of national pride that must be respected and handled with care.

Diaspora Remittances: Beneficiaries To Get N5 Incentive For Every USD Received, Says CBN

CBN Plans $100m Sale At Special Auction
A file photo of US dollar notes.

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has introduced the ‘CBN Naira 4 Dollar Scheme’ in its bid to sustain the increase in inflows of diaspora remittances into the country.

CBN announced this in a circular to all deposit money banks, International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs), and the public in general.

In the document dated March 5, 2021, and signed by its Director of Trade and Exchange Department, A.S. Jibrin, the apex bank explained that the scheme was an incentive for senders and recipients of international money transfers.

Accordingly, it noted that all recipients of diaspora remittances through IMTOs licensed by the nation’s financial regulator would henceforth be paid N5 for every 1$ received as remittance inflow.

The CBN added that the incentive of N5 for every $1 remitted by the sender and collected by the designated beneficiary would be paid through the commercial banks in Nigeria.

According to it, the incentive is to be paid to recipients whether they choose to collect the USD as cash across the counter in a bank or transfer the same into their domiciliary account.

The apex bank stated that it had discussed the new development with banks and IMTOs, saying the scheme would take effect from March 8 and end on May 8, 2021.

Just In: CBN Sells Dollars At N380/USD

CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele.

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has made an alteration to the price of dollar sales.

In a communique to all banks and Bureau De Change on Friday, the CBN advised that the BDC to end-user sales of the Dollar should not be more than N380/1USD.

This is the highest official exchange rate between the dollar and naira in over two years suggesting a devaluation might be in the pipeline.

READ ALSO: Coronavirus: CBN Set To Inject N1trn Into Nigerian Economy

CBN To Stop Pollution By Recycling Tonnes Of Bad Naira Notes

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has revealed plans to start recycling about 100 tons of paper banknote wastes generated weekly across the country.

The currency notes and coins withdrawn from circulation by the apex bank have been destroyed in 12 disposal centres across the country weekly.

The CBN stated in a communique tagged “Request for Proposal for the Recycling of Paper Banknote Wastes” that the naira notes wastes are destroyed through open air burning in sites owned by the Bank or rented, usually from the respective State Governments.

It added that “converting the waste materials into reusable objects will prevent wastage of potentially useful materials, reduce the consumption of fresh raw materials, minimise energy usage, avoid probable air pollution (from incineration) and water pollution (from landfilling).”

READ ALSO: ECOWAS Leaders Set Up Committee On Nigeria’s Land Border Closure

The apex bank called on accredited recycling companies interested in utilizing paper banknote wastes in its recycling process and help in converting them to useable products that would enhance economic activities in the country in addition to environmental sustainability.

“The purpose of this Request for Proposal (RFP) is to solicit competitive proposals from reputable companies that can recycle CBN paper banknote wastes into useable products that can be beneficial to the nation while adhering to Health Safety and Environment (HSE) Standards.”

It stressed that reputable companies should submit sealed bids for the purchase of Paper Banknotes briquettes on a monthly/quarterly contract basis from May 2020 and until further notice, while encouraging single or multiple vendors to submit proposals.

The requirements as stated by the CBN include; location of the factory and current activities, recycling process or technology to adopt, either for sole paper or mixed, the type of recycled products to be generated from the recycling process.

Other requirements are “the logistics for accessing or evacuating the banknote wastes from the locations where they are generated; Compliance with health, safety, and environmental standards; It should be noted that under no circumstances should the banknote wastes be diverted to any place other than the premises of the industrial outfit using it.”

CBN Injects $418m Into Forex Market

CBN Boosts FX Supply With Additional $180 MillionIn its continued effort to further lift the Naira, the Central Bank on Tuesday injected another 418 million dollars into various segments of the forex market after it injected 413.5 million dollars on Monday.

Figures obtained from the CBN indicate that the retail segment of the market received the highest intervention of 226 million dollars, followed by the wholesale window which received 100 million dollars.

The Small and Medium Enterprises window got 50 million dollars, while business/personal travel allowances, school tuition, medicals was allocated 42 million dollars.

According to the Apex bank, the volume of currency trading in the investors’ & exporters’ FX window now stands at 2.2 billion dollars.

Nigeria’s Foreign Reserves Hit 19-Month High

 Nigeria’s foreign exchange reserves rose to $30.8bn in April, the highest level since September 2015.

The increase could be attributed to a recent rise in global crude oil price, and proceeds of the country’s Eurobond, issued in march.

Data from the Central Bank shows that Nigeria’s forex reserves, stood at $30.31bn, a month ago.

The country’s reserves have risen 18.1 per cent since the start of the year, but are still far off the peak of $64bn, achieved in august, 2008.

The reserves had in March hit the $30bn mark for the second time since President Muhammadu Buhari assumed office in May.

The reserves have experienced a steady day-on-day increase of between 2.30 and 2.75 per cent since January 5, 2017.

The last time the reserves crossed the $30bn mark was in July 2015 before it began to decline.

The reserves were affected by low crude oil prices across the world, which reduced the availability of foreign exchange and in turn, put pressure on the naira.

A production cut agreement between OPEC and non-OPEC members have since led to an upsurge in crude oil prices, which in turn have benefitted the reserves.

Since February 2017, the Central Bank of Nigeria, has been providing foreign exchange to banks to meet the tuition, travel and medical needs of customers, thereby reducing the pressure on the naira.

Naira Expected To Rise Next Week

Naira, dollar, Market FX marketThe Naira is expected to appreciate on the street next week, following the Central Bank of Nigeria’s plan to increase dollar sale to retail currency bureaus.

The Central Bank is planning to raise dollar sales to Bureau De Change to $40,000 from the present $20,000, which will improve liquidity and help support the local currency.

The local currency was quoted at 410 to the dollar on the street, compared with 398 to the dollar, last week.

At the inter-bank market the local unit closed at 306.10 to the dollar on Wednesday compared with 306.20 last week.