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Reserves hit $40b, forex market gets $210m boost


Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) governor Godwin Emefiele. / AFP PHOTO / PHILIP OJISUA

The nation’s foreign exchange reserves yesterday hit $39.7 billion, after gaining about $1.6 billion in the last one week.Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele had last week Tuesday disclosed that the reserves were at $38.2 billion. He said the country was fully positioned to support genuine manufacturing companies that would make the difference in the pursuit of economic rebound.

The development came barely 18 days before the end of the year, when Emefiele predicted that the reserves would hit a $40 billion mark.The increase signals the country’s return to favourite destination in international deals and enhanced confidence, as investors priced the naira at N360.37 per dollar and turned over $301.21 million, according to FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange data.

Meanwhile, the interbank window of the foreign exchange market yesterday received another $210million from the CBN.According to figures obtained from the bank, the interventions were for the wholesale, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and invisibles segments of the market.

The Acting Director, Corporate Communications at the CBN, Mr. Isaac Okorafor, disclosed that the apex bank offered $100million to the wholesale segment, while the SMEs and invisibles segments each received $55 million. He reiterated that the releases were meant to boost liquidity, trade and ease of remittances for legitimate personal commitments.

In spite of the stable rate of N360/$1 and the expected inflow from various sources such as the Eurobond and remittances from the Diaspora, Okorafor said the CBN would continue to intervene in the inter-bank forex market to guarantee liquidity. He noted that the interventions had largely checked unwholesome activities of currency speculators.

The CBN said the naira maintained its steady rate against major currencies around the globe, exchanging for N360/$1 in the BDC segment of the market.

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Godwin Emefiele
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