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Exclusive: Stanbic IBTC scrapping Non-Interest Banking operation, may begin customers conversion

By Abdulwaheed Usamah

There are indications that Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s introduced Non Interest Banking (NIB) system as financial inclusion designed to meet some religious dictates has reached its peak, as financial houses who obtained certificates of the system operation may soon start backing out.

Since inception of the NIB in 2011, none of known conventional lenders who approached the CBN for the certificate of operation, including Sterling Bank and Stanbic IBTC, aside Jaiz Bank founded to run full fledged  system, were reported to not have been able to achieve good performance or result through the system as those others practicing interest-attracted system, despite the apex bank’s sensitization and other efforts to ensure the scheme stay.

Against struggle to survive such hurdles, operating banks such as Stanbic IBTC may soon boot out of the system, as revealed by its NIB unit.

Although the bank is yet to come out open about the decision but members of its staff from the unit have began reaching out to customers to inform them of the development and for account conversion, that is, from interest free, to that of interest attracted accounts, as directed by the bank.

A source from the financial institution who confided in The Guild, disclosed that after a management meeting recently, during which pros and cons on NIB operation was weighed, the lender resolved to scraping of the system since it could not account for any good value.

The source further said that the development may not have been borne as result of not-so-good performance of the unit as various board members disapproved of the its continued operation.

She hinted that the bank informed entire members of the unit of its decision to scrap the NIB operation at the end of 2017 and that it was expected to take effect once work resumes by 2018.

When asked what could be cause of the development, the source explained that its the not-so-good performance and several hurdles including non acceptability of the operation by some set of Nigerians which the scheme was designed for may have formed the the bank’s resolve.

She noted that the bank’s inability to break-even or drive the system and create value added from it may have also formed the arrived decision and that customers who considered not have benefited from the scheme were already complying to the financial institution’s directive.

“The bank’s NIB unit have been told to start informing customers on closing down of the unit and for account conversion and other migration process.

“We have been calling our customers to inform them of the development and even someone of us at the unit are beginning to receive letter of transfer”.

“I have been transferred from the branch where I serve under the NIB to another where I am to work as a conventional banker and same is happening to others”.

Although, there have not been any strong recommendation on the side of the bank over the operation by the watchdog of the NIB.

However, findings by The Guild, after contacting several customers of the bank, on the latest development, most of those reached, reacted to the decision and that some of them would have to drop their accounts since the bank has reneged against agreement.

One of the customers who spoke to our correspondent revealed that the bank had contacted him on the development and he had been invited to sign a conversion form.

He explained that though he was indifferent to the bank’s decision but the bank must have operated on the wrong grounds before coming to the conclusion of closing shop.

Another customer who also maintained anonymity claimed that she was yet to be contacted and if that turned out to be the case, she would have to close down her account.

“I have no intention to open a conventional account with Stanbic IBTC except for the Non Interest Banking aspect introduced then because I believe it would assist some of us who are religious and not ready to partake in anything unlawful.”

Meanwhile, in 2011, CBN issued Stanbic IBTC a license to operate Islamic banking services in Nigeria, with preliminary license been awarded to the bank  week earlier for a Shariah-compliant banking window, the first of which approved to a commercial bank in Nigeria.

Prio to the development, the CBN’s then governor, Lamido Sanusi, said Nigeria wants to be a hub of Islamic finance in the region and plans to sell its first Islamic bond, known as Sukuk, within 18 months.

After the statement was released, the apex bank disclosed that an approval issued to Jaiz International Bank, a local lender with international investors, to open the country’s first Shariah-compliant bank, after which Stanbic was licensed to begin operating Islamic banking branches within six months and if it fails to do so within that time, the lender will need to reapply for approval,

According to Moghalu, Islamic banking has significant potential but its subject to the risks that go with every other type of banking activity.”

But against public decry over the world Sharia as declared by he apex bank and fear that the country could be Islamised, CBN issued a new guidelines which addressed the scheme Non-Interest Banking contrary former.

Through a statement released then, the apex bank informed that the new guidelines were the outcome of the review of the earlier guidelines issued based on the recommendations of various stakeholders.

According to the statement, the new guidelines clarify the contextual definition of Non-Interest banking which is not restricted to Islamic banking, but also include other form of non-interest banking not based on Islamic principle. This is in accordance with the provisions of Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act (BOFIA) which clearly provide for the two variants of Non Interest banking.

“This ensures that discrimination on any grounds in the participation by individuals or institutions as promoters, depositors or other relevant parties in any transaction regarding a non-interest financial institutions, whether based on Islamic or other model, is strictly prohibited.

“Another significant review is the removal of any reference to Sharia Council which has been changed to Advisory Council of Experts whose responsibility is to advise the CBN on the appropriateness of relevant
financial products to be offered by the institutions.

“For the avoidance of doubt, section 23 (1) and section 66 of the BOFIA 1991, (as amended) explicitly provide for the licensing of Non-Interest Banks (NIBs). The CBN is obliged, by law, to issue licenses to appropriate entities for the establishment of NIBs provided they meet the regulatory requirements for licenses.

“In view of this, the CBN is open to receiving and evaluating applications for licensing of non-interest banking institutions based on other principles rather than the Islamic variant and will soon issue separate guidelines for non interest banking under other principles.

 

 

 

Nigeria’s rice importation drops by 95% – Ogbeh

By Abolaji Adebayo

Nigerian agricultural sector has experienced boom especially in the aspect of rice production as country was said to have substituted 95 per cent of locally produced for the imported one in the last two years, leaving the country with option of sourcing just 5 per cent foreign rice.

The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, who disclosed the drastic decline in the rate of rice importation said that the country had made a lot of progress in efforts to stop rice importation, adding that the feats were a plus to the national economy.

Analyzing the trend at the first Annual NACCIMA-NIRSAL Agribusiness and Policy Linkage Conference in Abuja recently, Ogbeh disclosed that by September 2015, the country was importing 644,131 tonnes of rice which was dropped to 20, 000 tonnes in September 2017, exactly two years later.

The minister said that the achievement was aided by the federal government’s policy to stop rice importation.

“The drop is about 95 per cent. However, smugglers have been very busy, trying to sabotage and compromise the country’s efforts to stop rice importation. There are 12.2 million people growing rice in the country, producing paddy for the rice mills.

“In Kano State alone, we have 1,421 rice mills. We have large paddy fields in Anambra, Ebonyi, Nasarawa, Jigawa, Kebbi state and more are coming up,’’ he said.

He explained that agriculture was strictly private sector-driven, adding that the government did not have any intention to engage in farming but to initiate policies that would be favourable for private sector investments.

“Government has no farm and cannot attempt to farm. If we try, it will be disastrous. Farming business belongs to the private sector.

“That is why in our new policy called the Green Alternative agriculture production programme, we spelt it out clear that agriculture is private sector-driven.

“All that government can do is to lay out policy and try to ensure that the private sector succeeds when it gets involved in agriculture. We cannot solve all the problems in a year or two but we will certainly make some progress,’’ he said.

He stated that the government would also try to reduce interest rate on agricultural loans to single digit, adding that agriculture could not thrive under loans with high interest rates.

On the challenges and recommendations identified at the conference, Ogbeh pledged that the ministry would follow them up and present them to the National Council on Agriculture and Rural Development for further action.

The Managing Director of NIRSAL, Aliyu Abdulhameed, said that the conference was in line with the federal government’s policy on private-public collaboration to make agriculture a business.

“What you see today is exactly what the federal government is looking at. How can the private sector lead and how can policy support the leadership of the private sector? What you observed today is the mandate of NIRSAL, as handed to us by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). How do you get actors from the value chain, from primary production, all the way through processes, retailing and domestic markets, to export?

“How do you get the actors financed in a systematic way? NACCIMA represents the private sector here. There are two value chains here too: the finance value chain and agricultural value chain.

“We will all come together, that is NIRSAL and NACCIMA, to operate in the policy space into the public-private partnership (PPP) agenda of the Federal Government to spur progress.

Also speaking, the President of NACCIMA, Alaba Lawson, said that all hands must be on deck to make headway in terms of treating agriculture as a business in the country.

The conference, with the theme: “Implementing the Agriculture Component of the Economic Recovery Growth Plan (ERGP)’’, was organised by the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA), in collaboration with the Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing system for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL).

CBN canvasses graduates inclusiveness in bank’s entrepreneurial schemes

By Abolaji Adebayo

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has charged graduating students of University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) to explore and take advantage of the various entrepreneurial schemes of the bank to create jobs rather than waiting on the government for white collar jobs.

According to the bank, there were various initiatives such as Youth Entrepreneurship Development Programme (YEDP) on which the graduates could leverage to become entrepreneurs, adding that other windows were also created for the youths through which they could source loans to start their businesses.

The Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, believed that the present economic challenge should be an opportunity for the graduates to contribute to the development of the country by creating more jobs on their own.

While delivering the 47th Convocation Lecture of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, entitled: “A mindset for Succeeding in Today’s Nigeria”, on Thursday, Emefiele noted that rising unemployment remained one of the greatest challenges facing the country, warning that failure to galvanize the youths could boomerang against the Nigerian society.

While stressing the need for young Nigerian graduates to change their mind-set on the labour market, the Bank boss insisted that, in spite of the many complaints about the country, Nigeria remained a land of limitless opportunities.

He therefore admonished the graduating students to strive to be job creators and entrepreneurs rather than being mere job-seekers.

Emefiele, who is also an alumnus of the University, said the CBN, as part of its effort to address the challenge of unemployment on the one hand and the promotion of entrepreneurship among the youth, had designed and formulated policies and programmes aimed at direct real sector intervention.

He encouraged the graduating students and other Nigerian youths with not more than five years post-service experience to take advantage of the CBN Youth Entrepreneurship Development Programme (YEDP), which the bank runs in collaboration with banks and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

Citing examples of successful entrepreneurs and businesses in Nigeria and abroad, Emefiele further challenged the graduating students to take cognizance of the opportunities in their respective environments, motivate themselves, create innovative ideas and turn their ideas into profitable ventures.

Speaking on current economic developments and policies of the bank, the CBN governor recalled that several global shocks that affected the Nigerian economy were amplified due to the country’s over-reliance on the oil sector for its foreign exchange revenue and for government finances.

He however disclosed that the bank embarked on some proactive policy measures such as policy tightening, restriction of forex for imports of 41 non-essential commodities, exchange rate management and development financing in key sectors in order to keep the economy sound.

Citing indicators such as the decline in inflation, improvement in forex supply, accretion to the foreign reserves, and improvement in the World Bank’s “doing business indicators,” and the significant boost in local production, Emefiele said that the Nigerian economy had turned the corner and the worst days were behind.

Earlier, in is his welcome address, the Vice Chancellor, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Prof. Benjamin Ozumba, said that the convocation lecture was one of the prestigious of the public lectures hosted by the University, hence the privilege of delivering the convocation lecture was usually reserved for men and women whose achievements would motivate and inspire graduating students and the entire university community to greater achievements.

The UNN Vice Chancellor listed some of the projects being embarked on by the University and solicited funding support to accomplish what the University had earmarked for itself. He said the initiatives would not only increase entrepreneurship and innovation, but would also help curb youth restiveness in the country.

Highpoint of the convocation lecture, which was graced by the Governor of Enugu State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, was the presentation of plaques and the Lion laptops manufactured by the University to the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele as well as a former Governor of the CBN, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, who was the Chairman of the event.

CBN votes for 14% lending rate retention

By Abolaji Adebayo

Consequent upon the vote by nine members at the last meeting held by the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has finally pegged its lending rate at 14 per cent due to persistent uncertain economic conditions and high inflation.

It was reported that eight members voted to retain the MPR and other monetary indices, one person voted to reduce the MPR by 100 basis point.

Addressing journalists at a news conference on the outcome of the last Monetary Policy Committee meeting for the year 2017 in Abuja on Tuesday, the Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, the means that the Cash Reserve Ratio still remained 22.5 per cent and Liquidity Ratio, 30 per cent, adding that the Asymmetric corridor is at +200 and -500 basis points around the MPR.

According to him, the committee took note of the gains made so far as regards its earlier decisions, thus extensively debated whether to hold, to tighten, or to ease the policy stance.

“While tightening will strengthen the impact of monetary policy on inflation with complementary effect on capital flows and exchange rate stability, it nevertheless could also dampen the positive outlook for growth.

“On the other hand, loosening may strengthen the outlook for growth by stimulating domestic aggregate demand through reduced cost of borrowing; it would nonetheless aggravate the upward trend in consumer prices and exchange rate pressures.

On the argument to hold, Emefiele said that the committee believed that key variables have continued to evolve in line with the current stance of macroeconomic stability policy and should be allowed to fully manifest.

The governor, who hinted that the committee expressed satisfaction with the slow but gradual growth in the economy, noted that the economy has begun to show strong signs of recovery as public investment has picked with increase housing construction at the federal and state levels as well as rising at the ports to support the purchasing manager index.

He explained that the committee was of the view that policy makers must not relent in their aggressive policy initiatives aimed at continuing the positive growth trajectory.

As he said, the committee affirmed its commitment to maintaining price stability which was crucial to sustainable economic growth and development.

Emefiele commended the fiscal authorities for the early submission of the 2018 Appropriation bill for considerations, saying that if approved on time, it would help reposition the economy on the path to growth.

On financial stability, he said that the committee noted the concentration of non-performing loans in some sectors but observed that the overall outlook for the banking system was stable as deposit money banks’ balance sheets remained strong.

Meanwhile, the committee called for strengthening of oversight and early warning systems in other to promptly identify vulnerabilities and proactively manage risks in the banking system.

When asked to comment on the sale of 9mobile, formally known as Etisalat, Emefiele said that the CBN would do all in its power to ensure smooth transfer of ownership to new investors.

“I am optimistic that the sale process is still on track, there is a determination that that sale must take place before Dec. 31, 2017. We remain focused on it. There are rumors that Barclays Africa, the financial advisers wants to withdraw from the transaction. If Barclays decide to do so, they will do so in a letter.

“Barclays was hired in a letter and if they decide to withdraw, they will do so in form of a letter; but as I speak with you, there is no letter from Barclays,” he said.

Experts react to NBS GDP figure, task FG on manufacturing sector

By Abolaji Adebayo

Financial experts have rated the performance of manufacturing sector low in relation to the recent 1.40 per cent growth in the economy reported by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

They claimed that the growth had been pushed by the rise in the price of oil, urging the Federal Government to create access to finance for the manufacturing sector to sustain the present GDP growth.

According to them, there was the need to strengthen the manufacturing sector to move the economy from being oil dependent.

Speaking at a forum in Lagos on Tuesday, a lecturer of Economics, Department of Economics, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Prof. Sheriffdeen Tella, said that government needed to assist the sector by providing cheap credit for operation and expansion.

Tella said that access to cheap funds would not be feasible without downward review of the interest rate by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

“This cannot happen as long as the CBN keeps the interest rate high and allow people to continue to invest in financial instruments for quick returns that cannot grow the economy.’’

He stated that the growth in GDP to 1.48 per cent should not be surprising because the price of oil had been rising.

The economist believed that the country was not yet moving away from oil dominated economy, noting that economic fundamentals had not changed from pre-depression.

“We are not yet moving away from oil dominated economy. This is not good for the economy as any crisis in the oil sector again will be catastrophic,’’ Tella added.

Also speaking, the Chief Operating Officer, InvestData, Ambrose Omordion, advised that the financial sector should be strengthened and encouraged to lend to the real sector to sustain economic growth and development.

Omordion maintaained that the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the apex bank has to reduce interest rate and stabilize the foreign exchange rate market by achieving single rate for the nation.

He stated that infrastructure development needs of the country such as power and good roads network, among others should be addressed quickly to boost productivity.

The data released by NBS on Monday, showed that the nation’s economy recorded a growth of 1.40 per cent in the third quarter of 2017.

The NBS said that the growth was due to increased oil production during the period.

The country returned to growth in the second quarter of 2017, but the recovery had been fragile due to depressed oil revenues.

The statistics office said oil production on which the OPEC member state’s economy largely relies, stood at 2.03 million barrels per day in the third quarter.

SEC faults 2017 budget appropriation, analyses negative impact on capital market

By Jide Ajia

Despite delay that characterized passage of 2017 budget, the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) has picked holes in appropriation of the yearly spending plan that, it has harmful effects in operation of the Capital Market.

SEC, the apex regulator of Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), disclosed the economic undesirable effects while briefing finance and investment journalists after at its quarterly Capital Market Committee Meeting (CMC) held on Wednesday in Lagos.

The Director General, SEC, Munir Gwarzo, said indirect effects of budgets on the capital market could be negative when the federal government put upward pressures on inflation and interest rates, or cause uncertainties in the foreign exchange market.

He hinted further that inflation spiral could be a cause and consequence of exchange rate bubbles and the net effect of such pressures could be negative on the stock market, if urgent attention was not paid to correct it.

Gwarzo stressed the commission has looked at the theoretical links between the capital market and budget with the aid of historical microeconomic data for Nigeria, adding that expenditure has correlated with the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth.

He, however, recommended the federal government to keep a tab on deficit financing, adding that high budget deficits tends to increase cost of borrowing for any given country.

The SEC boss also canvassed that investor education efforts particularly on the role of capital market in economic development should be strengthened and widened to include targeting the policy makers, practitioners and academics.

In addition, Gwarzo averred that the National Pension Commission and Pension Funds Administrators (PFAs), should take active steps to encourage creation of pension investments portfolios that were more diversified by exposing younger workers to take a greater percentage of equities since they have a longer time horizon to invest.

The Head, Vertical Market Group, Nigerian Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS), Samuel Goriola Oluyemi, on e-dividend mandate, stated that registrants stood at 2.1 million, while investors captured through NIBSS account currently stands at 838.68 million and total unique investors identified through Bank Verification Number (BVN) moved to 433.16 million.

While given further analyses of active investors in Nigerian capital market through e-dividend mandate, Oluyemi explained the ratio of male to female investors in the country was approximated at 2 to 1, while male investors constituted 65 per cent, the female counterpart contributed 35 per cent.

Oluyemi also disclosed to the financial press that investment statistics based on states of residence showed that investors in Lagos contributed 38 per cent, followed with Abuja based investors with eight percent and Rivers (6 per cent), Ogun and Oyo State (5 per cent) respectively.

Other investment statistics based on state of origin included investors who hailed from Anambra (10 percent), Imo (9 per cent); Ogun (9 percent); Delta (7 per cent) and Edo State contributed six per cent to the investment window.

Based on nationality, the NIBSS expert stated that investors in Nigeria, based on figures, were put at 421.37 million; Indian (146m); British (142m); Ghanaians (109); Lebanese (46m) and American investors in Nigeria capital market were 32 million.

Nigeria foreign reserves reach $31.22 billion, first time in 2 years

 By Jide Ajia

Then nation’s external reserve has risen to a two year high of $31.2 billion even as the naira appreciated to N367.5 kobo at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) window.

Data from the Financial Market Dealers Quote (FMDQ) showed that the indicative exchange rate for the window, also known as, Nigeria Autonomous Foreign Exchange (NAFEX) dropped from N368.17 per dollar on Tuesday to N367.5 per dollar on Wednesday, translating to 67 kobo appreciation for the naira.

The development was in contrast to the N1.73 depreciation suffered by the naira in the market in the first two days of the week.

However, the naira remained stable at N366 per dollar in the parallel market exchange rate.

Meanwhile data from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) revealed that the reserve rose to $31.2 billion on Monday August 8th from $30.88 billion on August 1st.

It should be noted that since July 2015, when it rose to $31.46 billion, the external reserve declined steadily till October 2016; from $23.89 billion on October 19th 2016, the reserve rose steadily to a new high of $30.98 billion on May 4th 2017.

Since then, the reserve fluctuated due to combination of increased dollar sales by CBN and decline in crude oil price as the trend changed on July 7th 2017, with the reserve recording steady rise, buoyed by improved foreign exchange inflow occasioned by increase in crude oil price, dollar inflow from foreign portfolio investors facilitated by the Investors and Exporters (I&E) window introduced in April, as well as reduction in dollar sale through CBN’s forex intervention.

According to the CBN, the reserve has risen by $890 million between July 7th and August 8th 2017.

Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun

FG to refinance $3bn worth Treasury bills through dollar debt

By Jide Ajia

The Federal Government has disclosed plans to refinance $3 billion worth of treasury bills denominated in the local currency market with dollar borrowing to lower costs and improve the country’s debt position.

The Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, said as Africa’s top economy was recovering from a recession, there was need to map out strategies by government to refinance $3 billion worth of maturing naira-denominated short-term treasury bills with dollar borrowing of up to three years’ maturity.

Adeosun announced the move while briefing newsmen shortly after a cabinet meeting in which the spending plan for 2018-2020 was approved in Abuja on Thursday.

Furthermore, Adeosun hinted that it was part of an attempt to restructure the debt portfolio into longer term maturities by borrowing more offshore and less at home, which the minister said would also support private sector access to credit to boost economy.

“As the economy recovers and grows we would be in a much better position to repay instead of just rolling over the debt,” Adeosun said.

She stressed that federal government would issue dollar debt as $3 billion worth of naira treasury bills gradually mature; although the minister did not provide a time frame for the target.

The finance minister further explained that the debt profile change would have positive impact on the value of naira because it means that $3 billion would be coming into the country’s foreign reserve.

According to her, we are not increasing our borrowings, we are simply restructuring instead of owing naira, we would be owing dollars.

On his part, the Minister for Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, while briefing the press at the same news conference stated that the government’s economic growth projection for next year had been revised down to 3.5 percent from 4.8 percent.

Udoma stated that the government had approved a slightly different growth trajectory of 3.5 percent for next year, down from 4.8 percent it announced last week in its strategy paper without further explanation for why the growth forecast had been revised down.

The budget minister forecasted that growth would top 4.5 percent by 2019 and 7 percent by 2020, adding that the government was projecting crude production of 2.3 million barrels per day for next year at a price of $45 a barrel.

However, dollars have been in short supply in Nigeria since the price of crude oil, the main source of hard currency, plunged in mid-2014, triggering a currency crisis, an exodus of foreign investors and its first recession in 25 years.

Currently, Nigeria expects a shortfall of $7.5 billion in its 2017 budget, the major reason for government planning to raise around half of that in foreign loans, including from the World Bank and from international debt markets.

As a member of Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Nigeria relies on crude sales for two-thirds of government revenue; has at least six exchange rates which it has used to mask pressure on the naira during the currency crisis caused by low oil prices.

Senator Udoma Udo Udoma

Naira sustains gain at parallel market

By Jide Ajia

The naira has recorded gains against the dollar at parallel market, exchanging at N363 to the dollar from the N364 posted on Tuesday.

Similarly, the pound sterling, on Wednesday, and the Euro closed at N477 and N428 to the naira, respectively.

At the Bureau De Change (BDC) window, the naira was traded at N363 to the dollar, while the pound sterling and the Euro closed at N477 and N428, apiece, while trading at the investors’ window saw the naira closing at N367.50 to the dollar.

However, traders expressed optimism that the interventions by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) at the market were capable of closing the gap further between the rates at the parallel market and other segments.

It should be noted that not all the BDCs in the South West bought foreign exchange from the weekly auction on Tuesday, but a credible BDC source, on condition of anonymity, confided in The Guild that since the near convergence of rates many BDCs were trading at a loss.

Earlier, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has unveiled plan to auction N62.43 billion or $171 million of treasury bills at an auction sales next Wednesday.

It also announced plans to offer N32.43 billion in three-month paper and N30 billion on a six-month bill with results of the auction to be announced the same day, while allotment letters would be issued for successful bids on Thursday.

The apex bank, in a statement, said all money market dealers should submit bids through the CBN S4 web interface between 9:00 a.m and 11:00 a.m next Wednesday.

The CBN says each bid must be in multiple of N1, 000 subject to a minimum of N50, 001,000 and authorized money market dealers are to submit multiple bids.

Treasury bills are short term debt instruments used to provide short-term funding for the government and control money supply in the economy.

CBN to auction N62bn treasury bills next week

By Jide Ajia

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has unveiled plan to auction a whooping N62.43 billion or $171 million of treasury bills at an auction sales next Wednesday.

It also announced plans to offer N32.43 billion in three-month paper and N30 billion on a six-month bill with results of the auction to be announced the same day, while allotment letters would be issued for successful bids on Thursday.

The apex bank, in a statement, said all money market dealers should submit bids through the CBN S4 web interface between 9:00 a.m and 11:00 a.m next Wednesday.

The CBN said each bid must be in multiple of N1, 000 subject to a minimum of N50, 001,000 and authorized money market dealers are to submit multiple bids.

Treasury bills are short term debt instruments used to provide short-term funding for the government and control money supply in the economy.

However, Bureaus De Change (BDCs), as critical stakeholders in the Foreign Exchange (FOREX) market, are known for the sale of small volumes of international currencies for invisibles.

Such include Personal Travelling Allowances (PTA), Business Travelling Allowances (BTA), overseas school fees and payment of medical fees abroad.

Since the renewed onslaught of currency speculators on the naira, culminating in a near currency crisis in contemporary Nigeria’s economic history, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has made it mandatory for BDCs to carry out due diligence on its customers to ascertain the genuineness of their transactions in foreign exchange.

Thus BDCs are mandated by the CBN to verify the travelling documents of their customers and their Bank Verification Numbers (BVN) among other requirements.

In keeping faith with this mandate, the leadership of the Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), commenced the rebranding of BDC operations nationwide with a call on its members to automate their operations for transparency and accountability.

ABCON is partnering with the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS), and the CBN in achieving a safe terrain for currency transactions.