In his virtual goodwill message at the opening of the 32nd Seminar for Finance Correspondents and Business Editors in Akure, Emefiele, who was represented by the Deputy Governor, Corporate Services of the CBN, Mr Lamtek Adamu, noted that the apex bank’s demand management policy was one of the rafts that made the naira remain largely stable at the import and export (I & E) window, particularly since the discontinuation of FX allocation to Bureau De Change operators along with the convergence between the CBN and NAFEX rates.
“Banks are now able to meet the demands of their customers seeking forex for SMEs, school fees, medical and PTAs.
“Our current account deficit has narrowed significantly due to a surplus position in the goods account. The surplus position in the goods account is occasioned by a reduction in imports, increase in crude oil and gas export receipts, and improvement in remittances. Remittance inflows have been supported by our ‘Naira for Dollar’ scheme, and we have seen a surge in remittance inflows. “In our sustained effort to reduce foreign exchange demand pressure and facilitate investment, the CBN, on April 27, 2018, signed a three-year bilateral currency swap agreement of $2.5 billion, equivalent to ¥15.0 billion or N720 billion with the Peoples Bank of China (PBoC.) It is heartening to note that these policies are yielding positive results in terms of meeting genuine demand for foreign exchange and exchange rate stability”, Emefiele stated.
The CBN Governor added that the apex bank established specific initiatives to resolve the underlying factors acting as challenges to long-term GDP growth and economic productivity.
This, he said, was part of its long-term strategy for strengthening the Nigerian economy, adding that measures were deployed to increase credit allocations to pivotal productive sectors of the economy at reasonable interest rates. This is with a view to diversifying the base of the economy, stimulating output, creating jobs and significantly reducing import bills.
“Further to our conviction that the banking sector must pay attention to providing long-term finance for infrastructure development in the country, InfraCorp has been established by the CBN in partnership with African Finance Corporation and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority. InfraCorp would enable the use of mostly private capital to support infrastructure investment that will have a multiplier effect on growth across critical sectors.
“Within the CBN, our methods (especially in the management of financial system liquidity, FX market and development financing initiatives) have been able to balance the delicate objectives of price stability and real output growth,’’ he said.
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