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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), on Thursday, announced the lifting of the ban on 43 items previously restricted from accessing foreign exchange (forex) from the investor’s and exporters’ (I&E) window.

In 2015, the CBN initially restricted 41 items from accessing FX from the I&E window, the country’s official market.

By implication, importers of the commodities were forced to source for FX at the black market often at higher rates.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says it will boost liquidity in the foreign exchange market by intervening “from time to time”.

The apex bank, in a statement issued on Thursday, said that as market liquidity improves, the interventions will “gradually decrease”.

The director of corporate communications of the bank, Dr. Isa AbdulMumin, said a significant change has been made in the foreign exchange market policy.

Importers who were previously restricted from purchasing foreign exchange for 43 specific items, as outlined in the 2015 Circular referenced as TED/FEFPC/GEN/O1/010 and its addendums, are now allowed to participate in the Nigerian Foreign Exchange Market to buy foreign currency for their transactions.

As of October 2021, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had restricted access to Forex from FX market for the following 43 items: Rice, cement, Margarine, Palm kernel, palm oil products and vegetable oils, Meat and processed meat products and Vegetables and processed vegetable products. Others are: Poultry and processed poultry products, Tinned fish in sauce (Geisha)/sardines, Cold rolled steel sheets, Galvanized steel sheets, Roofing sheets, Wheelbarrows, Head pans, Metal boxes and containers, Enamelware, Steel drums, Steel pipes, Wire rods (deformed and not deformed), Iron rods and reinforcing bars.

Also included on the list were: Wire mesh, Steel nails, Security and razor fencinpoles, Wood particle boards and panels, Wood fiberboards and panels, Plywood boards panels, Wooden doors, Toothpicks, Glass and glassware, Kitchen utensils, Tableware, Tiles-vitrified and ceramic.

Textiles, Woven fabrics, Clothes, Plastic and rubber products, polypropylene granules, cellophane wrappers and bags, Soap and cosmetics, Tomatoes/tomato pastes, Eurobond/foreign currency bond/ share purchases, Piston crowns, Ball bearings, High voltage cables, Transformers/switch gears and Gas cylinders were also on list.

In the statement released, AbdulMumin said the CBN is actively working to address the existing backlog of foreign exchange transactions.


By oyonews

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