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.

CBN To Sustain Intervention In FX Market

CBN Mandates Banks On PTAs, School FeesThe Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says it will sustain its intervention in the Foreign Exchange (FX) market to further achieve stability of the Naira.

In a statement by the CBN spokesman, Isaac Okorafor, the apex bank said its release of $418 million on Friday at the retail-SMIS was to ensure ample supply of foreign exchange liquidity in the market.

The financial regulator explained that the releases was in addition to the sum of $350 million sold as wholesale auction, BTA/PTA, and school fees during the week.

“In the weeks ahead, the CBN will sustain its intervention through the sale of foreign exchange to all segments of the market (i.e. PTA/ BTA, Wholesale SMIS, Retail SMIS and the BDC).

“The Bank will sell short-tenured forwards of 7-30-day maturity to meet the demand of manufacturers and all other foreign exchange users.

“These significant injections of foreign exchange into the market should reassure all foreign exchange users of our determination to continue to meet all legitimate FX demand in the market, while striving to achieve exchange rate stability in the market,” the statement said.

Naira To Trade Within Narrow Range In Coming Days

Naira To Trade Within Narrow Range In Coming DaysThe Naira is expected to trade within a narrow range in the coming days, with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) injecting more dollars into the market.

The local currency was quoted at 463 Naira per dollar on the black market on Friday, weaker than the 450 Naira to a dollar level last week.

Commercial lenders quoted the Nigerian currency at 305 Naira 80 Kobo to a dollar on the inter-bank market, compared with 305 Naira 50 Kobo it closed at last week.

News also came in during the week that the Federal Government in its Economic Growth Recovery Plan, said the current ban on 41 items from accessing Foreign Exchange (FX) in the inter-bank FX market would be reviewed.

The influx of dollar into the market is part of plans by the apex bank to narrow the margin between official and parallel market exchange rates.

This followed the latest data by the CBN which revealed that Nigeria’s Foreign Exchange Reserves which have experienced a steady increase since January 5, 2017 rose above $30 billion this week.

Experts attributed the increase to the recovery in crude oil prices which have soared, following the output cut deal agreed between OPEC and Non-OPEC members on January 1.

The last time the reserves crossed the $30 billion mark was in July 2015, where it went as high as $31.63 billion in August 2015 before it began to decline.

CBN Assures Nigerians Of Policies To Strengthen Naira

Naira, Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Nigerians, Godwin EmefieleThe Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele, says the apex bank will continue to come up with policies to strengthen the naira.

The CBN Governor added that he expects the naira to stabilise while inflationary pressure is expected to reduce.

He made the remarks on Tuesday at the first Monetary Policy Committee meeting for the year in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

At the meeting to evaluate the economy’s performance in the last quarter of 2016, Mr Emefiele gave an overview of the international market and how it has affected the domestic economy.

He noted that the apex bank would come up with policies to increase Nigeria’s foreign reserve which currently stands at $28.9 billion.

The apex bank governor also assured Nigerians of a more resilient economy in 2017 which he said would be driven by agriculture and diversification of the economy.

He added that the bank would make the foreign exchange available for manufacturers and other businesses.

Reps Oppose Ban On Vehicle Importation Through Land Borders

Reps Kick Against Ban On Vehicle Importation Through Land BordersThe House of Representatives has asked President Buhari to suspend the ban on importation of new and used cars through land borders.

The ban which was announced on December 5, 2016 by the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) is due to take off from January 1, 2017.

The lawmakers, however, say the policy is too harsh as it would further worsen the economic situation of many Nigerians who are already groaning under the prevailing recession.

The decision of the lawmakers followed the adoption of a motion by Representative Abubakar Salami who noted that the percentage of Nigerians who can afford cars has reduced drastically following the decline in the value of naira, inflation and unemployment.

He said that the Federal government has not put in place alternative measures to ensure that Nigerians have access to cars, “since it is cheaper to buy cars from neighbouring countries and still generate revenue by ensuring that our borders are secured”.

“Some of those making these policies have failed to patronise the made-in-Nigeria goods, especially Nigerian Assembly vehicles which are in any case not affordable to over 80% of Nigerians who can only afford fairly used imported vehicles.

“The ban will cause more harm than good and it will certainly lead to the increase of smuggling,” he said.