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Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Naira depreciates to N287\$ as CBN refunds BDCs

LAGOS — The Naira depreciated to N287 per dollar at the parallel market, yesterday, following the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to stop dollar sales to Bureaux de Change (BDCs).
Recall that the CBN, on Monday, announced it would no longer sell dollars to BDCs, thus ending the nine years scheme introduced in 2006.
Prior to the announcement of the new policy on Monday, the dollar exchange rate hovered between N275 and N282 per dollar across the country. But as at close of business, yesterday, it had risen to N287 per dollar. This implies depreciation of about N7.
Confirming this development, President, Association of Bureaux de Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, said the exchange rate had risen to N287 per dollar in response to the CBN policy.
Meanwhile, the CBN, yesterday, refunded all the BDCs for the money paid for the dollar sale scheduled for today. BDCs usually pay the CBN in advance for the purchase of dollars, which are collected on Wednesdays.
Last week, the apex bank had directed BDCs to pay for $10,000 each which they did by Monday. But following the announcement, the management of the CBN directed that the money should be refunded to the BDCs.
However, BDC operators are seeking clarification on the new policy. While announcing the policy, the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, said: “Operators in this segment of the market would now need to source their foreign exchange from autonomous source. They must, however, note that the CBN would deploy more resources to monitoring these sources to ensure that no operator is in violation of our anti-money laundering laws.”
Chief Executive Officer, H.J Trust BDC, Mr. Harisson Owoh, however, said the apex bank needed to clarify if the autonomous source include banks.

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