BDCs get dollars at N393, sells for N494

Bureau De Change operators obtained the United States dollar in the Central Bank of Nigeria in N393 but sold it for N494 on Friday, an evaluation from our correspondent has shown.

Sources from several commercial banks told our correspondent that the banks have been requested to finance the BDCs at the rate of N393/$ as of Friday.

A bank official, who spoke with our correspondent on condition of anonymity, said, “We’re still giving them $10,000 per BDC twice per week. As of today, we’re giving them at the speed of N393/$.

“The CBN funds the BDCs through the commercial banks. They visit their own banks to accumulate it. The CBN has been financing them through commercial banks to make the process seamless.

“We had been asked to fund them N393/$ at around to the banks as at now.”

Meanwhile, the naira slumped further on Friday to 494.7/$ in the concurrent market in 490/$ as of Thursday evening.

Data obtained from the site of the CBN’s official rates for the BDCs, naijabdcs.com, revealed that the naira was purchased and sold at 493 and 494.7 per cent on Friday at the BDCs.

The CBN recently embraced the NAFEX exchange rate of N410.25/$1 as its official exchange rate.

It confirmed this new official rate on its website on Monday night, days later it had eliminated the N379/$ speed.

A former Director-General, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria, Richard Borokini, stated exactly what the CBN was attempting to do was to close the gap between the black market and official rates.

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He said, “Maybe because of the actions of some of the people in the financial sector, the bankers themselves as well as the proprietors of this BDCs, you can’t get naira at that N410/$ at the black market or at the secondary marketplace; it’ll be greater than that.

“It will not work due to the actions of those that are hoarding the bucks. The way it will work is if they scrap all those BDCs, and if anyone has needs for dollars, let him use them to the banks and the banks will provide them at that cost.

“Provided that the BDCs are still working, those rates cannot become real. The only way is just let everybody go to the banks and apply if they require a dollar.”

The Director-General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dr Muda Yusuf, said the official rate wasn’t a functional rate.

“People that are performing business, not one of these is getting it in the speed. The NAFEX rate that they have embraced now is roughly N410.25. Even that is still far from the open market rate or the parallel market rate which is almost N500/$,” he said.

CBN had yielded to the clamour to move towards convergence of the exchange rates which was a welcome development, he explained.

In April 2017, the CBN established the I&E forex window as part of attempts to deepen the foreign exchange market and adapt each of forex obligations.

The purpose of the window was supposed to boost liquidity in the foreign exchange market and ensure timely settlement and execution for eligible transactions.

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