Forex scarcity deepens as Naira dips to N420/$1 at parallel market

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…CBN appoints 11 new IMTOs

By Odunewu Segun

The naira has fallen to an all-time low of N420 to a dollar at the parallel market earlier today as against the N418 it traded for on Tuesday. As forex scarcity deepened, the naira was quoted at 317.09 to the dollar on the interbank market, against the N305.5 it closed with yesterday.

However, BDC operators have raised the hope of a gradual appreciation of the local currency in the near term as the Central Bank of Nigeria licensed 11 new international money transfer operators to address the dollar supply side.

According to the President of Association of Bureau De Change operators of Nigeria (ABCON), Aminu Gwadebe, the effective implementation of the apex bank’s policy and the appointment of new international money transfer operators will ensure that banks will have more dollar to sell to BDC operators and provide the needed liquidity in the market.

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Gwadabe said CBN directive that commercial lenders should sell dollar inflow through money transfer operators to bureaux de change has boosted daily dollar supply to the currencies agencies to around $10-$20 million and this could further boost supply and help support the naira.

The Central Bank of Nigeria on Tuesday released the names of 11 new international Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) to operate in Nigeria as an effort to liberalise the Foreign Exchange Market, ensure liquidity and make foreign exchange more readily available to low end users.

The  new IMTOs are: Trans-Fast Remittance LLC ;  Worldremit Limited;  UAE Exchange Centre LLC;  Wari Limited;  Homesend S.C.R.L; Small World Financial Services Group Limited ;  Weblink International Limited ;  Cashpot Limited ;  DT&T Corporation Limited;  Fiem Group LLC DBA Ping Express ; CP Express Limited.