Sunday, March 17, 2024

Despite Lifting FX Ban, Dollar Supply Declines To $53.02m

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Nigeria recorded a significant drop in dollar supply on Friday, a day after the Central Bank of Nigeria lifted the forex ban on 43 items.

The apex bank in a major monetary policy shift, on Thursday, restored the 43 items which were banned from accessing forex since June 2015 in order to, according to it, “sustain the stability of the foreign exchange market and the derivation of optimum benefits from goods and services imported into the country.”

Items on the list include rice; cement; toothpicks; margarine; palm Kernel/Palm oil products/vegetable oils; meat and processed meat products; vegetables and processed vegetable products; poultry – chicken, eggs, Turkey; Soap and cosmetics; tomatoes/tomato pastes; milk; maize and tinned fish in sauce (Gelsha)/Sardines.

The CBN in a statement signed by the Director, Corporate Communications, Isa AbdulMumin, said it would continue to promote orderliness and professional conduct by all Nigerian foreign exchange market participants to ensure market forces determined exchange rates on a willing buyer – willing seller principle.

The statement added that the apex bank has set as one of its goals the attainment of a single FX market.

Mixed reactions trailed the decision as some experts warned that the new policy might worsen the forex challenge as it would increase demands without commensurate boost in supply.

Data from the FMDQ showed a decline in dollar supply at the Investor & Exporter forex window on Friday, a day after the policy was announced.

The I&E window on Friday recorded a turnover of $53.02 million from $407.66 million on Thursday, representing a decline of 86.99 percent.

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