Saturday, 31 October 2015

CBN governor strike back to Emir Sanusi, says no further devaluation of Naira

Why CBN governor replies Emir Sanusi, says no further devaluation of Naira

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, will not devalue the naira again, the governor of the bank, Godwin Emefiele, said Friday, a day after Vice President Yemi Osinbajo gave similar commitment.


Mr. Emefiele told journalists that the last devaluation took place in February and would remain so for now.

“There has been a lot of talk on whether or not we want to depreciate our currency again.

“The truth is that we had adjusted the currency by depreciating it from N155 to N197 in February this year.

“There is no intention to depreciate or adjust the currency any longer,” he said.

There had been calls for the devaluation of naira in the face of economic crunch.

The International Monetary Fund and a former CBN governor, Sanusi Lamido, recently called for the depreciation of the currency.

Mr. Osinbajo said on Thursday that the government will not shift its stance.

According to Mr. Emefiele, “the President has been very clear on this; the Vice President has been very clear on this and let me further reiterate our position at the CBN that we are not considering any further depreciation of the currency”.

He said the focus of the bank was how to deepen the foreign exchange market to make it viable.

“What we are trying to concentrate on right now is how to improve and deepen the foreign exchange market by improving supply of foreign exchange into the market.

“And to do so, we are trying to encourage people to export and earn your export proceeds and use your export proceeds to import whatever you need to import.

“We are also concentrating on how to reduce the import of items that we can produce in the country today,” he said.

Mr. Emefiele said soon the CBN would be launching a campaign called PAVE, which means “Produce locally, Add Value and Export your product and earn your foreign exchange for your imports”.

He said the campaign was the only way producers could support the efforts of CBN in intervening and providing foreign exchange in the market to meet the import needs of the people.

“It is very clear, what we need to do is reduce our propensity to import but we will not depreciate our currency. For now we will not,” he said.

On the list of items in the import prohibition list, he said had no power to ban the importation of any item.

“What we have done is to exclude certain items that are imported into the country from obtaining foreign exchange from the Nigerian foreign exchange market.

“Yes, it is also true we held a stakeholders’ meeting with the organized private sector and prominent and leading private sector stakeholder were at that meeting.

“The purpose was to engage the private sector to make the private sector understand that government realizes that they are engine of growth.

“We also used the opportunity to explain to them the basis and purpose of those policies that we have introduced.

“At the end of that meeting they were very happy, they saw our position and indeed at the end of that meeting some of them provided us with the names of some items that should be included in the list that should be excluded from foreign exchange.

“And I must confess that at this stage, given the determination of some of the organized sectors to say that yes, they produce these items and that we should exclude those items from foreign exchange, we are reviewing that list.

“We may in due course include more items, products that can be produced in Nigeria, in the list of items that will be excluded from foreign exchange in the Nigerian foreign exchange market.’’