- DSS Raids Forex Dealers in Lagos, Abuja
Operatives of the Department of State Security on Thursday arrested some unregistered Bureau De Change operators in Lagos and Abuja.
Also raided by the DSS operatives were registered BDCs operators who were accused of selling the dollar above N400.
The development, forex dealers said, forced some of the BDC operators to seek means of selling foreign currencies in their possession, especially dollars, pounds and euros at stipulated rates.
A licensed BDC operator in Abuja, Alhaji Yusuf Rabiu, told the News Agency of Nigeria that the raid on the registered operators made some of them to reach an agreement on how much the various foreign currencies should be sold for.
On Wednesday, the DSS had raided the offices of some BDC in Lagos and Abuja, arresting operators selling above the stipulated exchange rate.
The DSS operatives posed as end-users who came to purchase dollars from the BDCs. After surveying the market for exchange rate offerings, they arrested some BDC operators who sold above the Central Bank of Nigeria’s stipulated rates.
Rabiu said, “On Monday, the EFCC called so many licensed BDC operators. The issue is that they feel we are unnecessarily hiking the rates. But it’s not our fault.
“Right now, their focus is on our business; they have been calling us one by one and we don’t want problems. That is why we have agreed to have a fixed rate for now. After the raid in Lagos, the Abuja operators met and agreed on a fixed rate.”
Another trader told Reuters that security agents visiting the BDC operators told dealers not to sell dollars for more than N395.
“We’ve stopped buying dollars from just anybody that walks into our shops due to the harassment from security agents and a directive from our association,” said a dealer, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The President, Association of Bureau De Change Operators, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, said the association had this week inaugurated committees to ensure that members complied with its regulations on exchange rates.
He said ABCON was working with the CBN to ensure that speculators, illegal operators and errant members were dealt with.
Gwadabe added that licensed dealers had agreed with the central bank and the security agencies to enforce a rate of N390 to N400 to the dollar.
“The issue of naira depreciation has been narrowed to the activities of speculators and we have decided, with the cooperation of both the central bank and the security agents, to enforce a new rule on pricing,” he said.
But economic and financial experts said the approach of arresting the operators would not work.
A currency analyst at Ecobank Nigeria, Mr. Kunle Ezun said, “We cannot control the naira value or exchange rate by fiat. It is beyond that. Until there is enough liquidity in the foreign exchange market, we cannot do that. The DSS raiding the BDCs will only add to the problem. That is not how to stabilise or bring down the exchange rate.
“Exchange rate control cannot come by fiat. When the CBN began the flexible exchange rate policy in June, a lot of things were done. We need to look into this clearly. The issue at the market now is lack of liquidity and this cannot be addressed in the short-term. We should allow a full-fledged interbank rate; transparency and price discovery are key elements of the market.”
Naira Exchange Rates Today, Tuesday, August 3, 2021
Naira gained N1 against the United States Dollar on Tuesday to open the day at N504 at the parallel market, popularly known as the black market. Against the British Pound and the Euro, the Naira exchanged at N710 and 600, respectively.
At the bureau de change section, Naira remained at N520 to a United States Dollar, N715 to a British Pound and N603 to a Euro. That was after the Central Bank of Nigeria halted forex allocations to BDCs operators across the nation.
Naira Black Market Exchange Rates
Morning * Midday** Evening *** Final Rates
Bureau De Change Naira Rates
Central Bank of Nigeria’s Official Naira Rates
|8/2/2021||SOUTH AFRICAN RAND||28.4032||28.4379||28.4726|
N.B: These tables are updated three times a day.
Banks CEOs Declare Readiness, Assured No Hidden Charges In Forex Sale
Chief executives of banks have assured no hidden charges in the sale of foreign exchange as they declared their readiness to meet the demands of Forex in the country.
The CEOs under the aegis of the Committee of Chief Executives of Banks at a virtual parley with the media also said they are not interested in procuring bureau de change licenses to dispense the new responsibility thrust on them by the central bank of Nigeria (CBN)
At a media briefing chaired by the chairman, and the managing director of Access Bank, Herbert Wigwe, other CEOs in attendance include Segun Agbaje of GTCO, Yemisi Edun of FCMG amongst others.
The briefing was in reaction to the CBN circular with Ref No: BSD/DIR/PUB/LAB/14/052 which gave a directive to Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) to set up teller points at designated branches and sell Foreign Exchange customers in need.
The directive in the circular signed by Haruna Mustafa, Director, Bank Supervision Department, was a follow up to the stoppage by the CBN, of the sale of forex to the Bureau De Change (BDC) operators in the country.
With this development, banks are now to attend to legitimate FX requests for Personal Travel Allowance, Business Travel Allowance, tuition fees, medical payments and SMEs transactions, among others.
The regulator also disclosed that a toll-free line had been set up at the CBN for bank customers to escalate unresolved complaints related to their FX requests.
Speaking at the media briefing, Herbert Wigwe assured of the readiness of the banks to meet the demands of the customers without any additional costs, noting that they have more capacity than the BDCs
“Banks have broader network than the previous sources and if you look at the branch network of all the banks in the country, I am not sure that the alternatives have resources like banks to provide this service to everybody”.
He allayed the fear of hidden charges said the transaction comes at no additional cost to the customers.
“There is no one-cent additional charge. It is unfortunate that bankers always come under pressure every time because of accusations of hidden charges. There is no additional charge in this service,” he stated.
Segun Agbaje, the group managing director of GTCO, promised that the banks will provide several channels for the customers to get their supply for their needs as he assured of the readiness of the banking system.
“They can start to come from today. We are ready to fund their demands”. stating that different banks have different strategies to ensure there are no hitches.
He stated that the control is centralised in each bank while the service is decentralised so as to be able to cater to many at the same time.
“We will run a transparent system and the compliance will be very strict because there will be sanctions. Anyone that refuses to comply with the rules will be sanctioned by the regulator and the law enforcement agencies” as he warned those that could want to come with fake documentation or passport to beat the process.
In her contribution, Yemisi Edun of FCMB assured that customers will have the same experience across the board irrespective of the bank as she allayed that the services may be poor in some banks.
“We have done this with remittance where we dedicate desks to attend to customers and customers will be directed to the desks once they have proper documentation.
In conclusion, Wigwe stated that apart from the injection that could be coming from the CBN, the banks also have their sources for foreign exchange which include from International Monetary Transfer Organisation, Diaspora remittances, and others from where they can meet the customer’s demands.
“We are putting structure and infrastructure in place to meet the demands of the customers but they should come with proper documentation” Wigwe stated
The apex bank expects the DMBs to adequately publicize the locations of the designated branches and make necessary arrangements to sell FX to customers in cash and/or electronically in compliance with extant regulations,
While CBN said the banks should ensure that no customer was turned back or refused FX provided that documentation and all other requirements are satisfied, it also outlaws undue delays, rationing and/or diversion of FX while it compels DMBs to establish electronic application and alert systems to update customers on the status of their FX requests, the circular added.
BDCs Continues To Provide Forex Services After CBN Halts Sales Of Forex To Operators
The recent announcement by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) suspending dollar sales to Bureau de Change Operators would not stop the forex retailers from conducting their services in line with their operating licenses and guidelines.
According to a statement by the President of the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), Aminu Gwadabe, BDCs will continue to provide foreign exchange services to the public.
“BDCs are licensed to provide retail FX services, including buying from the public and also selling to end-users for allowable transactions namely Personal Travel Allowance (PTA), Business Travel Allowance (BTA), payment of medical and school fees,” Gwadabe said.
He added that while the dollar sale from CBN had helped in enhancing supply, the fact remains that BDCs are empowered to source FX from other sources and also to provide various services to members of the public.
“While the CBN has stopped dollar sale to BDCs, it has not canceled their operating licenses, or banned them from providing FX services to members of the public”, he added.
“At ABCON, we urge our members to see the CBN pronouncement as a wake-up call and opportunity to widen their customer base and deepen their business.
“ABCON has always worked with the CBN to ensure proper working of the FX market and in line with this principle, we will engage with the apex bank to address and resolve all the issues that led to the recent action, including identification and sanctioning of earring BDCs, where necessary.
“In addition to this, and in view of the fact that BDCs have been very effective in ensuring stable exchange rate, ABCON will work with relevant stakeholders including law enforcement agencies to develop a National BDC Policy with the aim of enhancing the contribution of the BDC subsector to the nation’s economy”, he said.
Business4 weeks ago
How to Redeem Gift Cards, Gift Card Rates in Nigeria
Government2 weeks ago
Security Operatives Arrest Sunday Igboho in Cotonou, Benin Republic
Government3 weeks ago
National Intelligence Agency Receives N4.87 Budget to Track Conversations
Finance4 weeks ago
African Development Fund Extends $83.6 Million in Grants to Boost Ethiopia-Djibouti Electricity Trade
Government3 weeks ago
South Africa Deploys Army to Quell Unrest Linked to Zuma Imprisonment
News3 weeks ago
FG Awards Federal Road Contract Worth N309B To Dangote Group
Banking Sector3 weeks ago
Guaranty Trust Bank Completes Corporate Re-organisation, Rebrands to Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc
Business3 weeks ago
Three Entrepreneurs in Botswana, Zambia, and Malawi Beat over 1,000 Applicants to Win Prestigious SEED Award