October 4, 2015

CBN to Ease FOREX Restrictions in the Long Term

Dolapo Omidire

Vice President Yemi Osibanjo told Reuters on Saturday that restrictions placed by the Central Bank of Nigeria to defend the weakened Naira are definitely short term. The Naira has faced significant pressure over the past 12 months amid low crude oil prices and reduced dollar earnings. After two currency devaluations, the CBN went on to place capital controls on bank accounts and restrict access to FOREX for the importation of multiple items, 46% of which were directly related to the property sector.

However, Nigeria’s VP has now explained to reporters that:

“restrictions are definitely short term. There is no question about that….So, long term, we expect that the central bank will ease restrictions as we go along.”

This will be well received by retailers, property developers, manufacturers and more who have felt the heat from these restrictions throughout the year. However, firmer language preferably from the Central Bank will be required to reassure many investors and market participants who have been strained by these restrictions.

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