Barely a few months ago businesses all around the country threatened to collapse or relocate owing to their inability to access forex for their activities. That is now likely to become forgotten as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has recently pledged to ensure that businesses get the forex they need.
In a fresh statement released yesterday, reports that the apex bank said it plans to make more Dollars available in order to offset a backlog of outstanding forex obligations to manufacturers, airlines, fuel importers and agriculture businesses.
“Authorized dealers’ accounts with the Central Bank will be debited in full for the Naira equivalent of the Dollar bid amount on a spot basis. The central bank will settle the bids through forward settlements of two months” the Bank said.
The apex bank had also on Monday offered $150 million wholesale forwards to banks and revealed that it also released $90 million for invisible transactions to ensure liquidity in the forex market. Satisfying the demands of these businesses is however going to be a different ball game as the demands are likely to be significantly higher than those of invisibles such as medical fees and Personal Travel Allowances. This may serve as a test of the CBN’s resolve, especially as the foreign reserves have dipped for the first time this year.