The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has taken proactive measures to counteract the depreciation of the Naira, with imminent interventions set to be unveiled within the coming days.
Acting Governor of the apex bank, Folashodun Shonubi, disclosed this to State House correspondents on Monday after a meeting with President Bola Tinubu at the Presidential Villa in Abuja. Shonubi warned that the government would take stringent action against those engaged in clandestine activities within the foreign exchange market, including the parallel market.
Highlighting the President’s apprehensions concerning the market’s fluctuations and their impact on the populace, Shonubi shared that discussions had revolved around strategies to stabilise the Naira. Shonubi, noting that speculative tendencies rather than demand were steering changes in the parallel market, cautioned that speculators would face substantial losses once the government’s plans were executed.
He said: “Mr President is very concerned about some of the goings-on in the foreign exchange market. “One of the things we discussed is what could be done to stabilise and what could be done to improve the liquidity in the market and also the goings-on in the various other markets, including the parallel market.
“He’s concerned about its impact on the average person, since, unfortunately a lot of activities that we do, which are purely local, are still referenced to exchange rates in the parallel market. We’ve discussed, and I’ve shared with him what we’re doing to improve supply.
“If you look at the official market, you’ll find that that the market has been fairly stable and the spreads of the difference have not fluctuated as much. We do not believe that the changes going on in the parallel market are driven by pure economic demand and supply, but are touched by speculative demand from people.
“Some of the plans and strategies, which I’m not at liberty to share with you, means sooner rather than later, the speculators should be careful because we believe the things we’re doing, when they come to fruition, may result in significant losses to them.
“But my presence here is more about the concerns the President has and his needs to know that we are doing something about it, assurances of which I have given him totally. So I hope this helps. We are looking at it and we’re doing things which will significantly impact the market in a few days time and we will all see it.
“The intention is to ensure the environment operates at a level that’s more efficient, but also that is also very reasonable and does not have a negative impact to the best that we can on the lives of the average person. Thank you very much.”