Thursday, June 8, 2017
CBN opens Forex window for airlines, oil marketers
In a notice to lenders issued yesterday, the CBN said it planned to settle the bids through a combination of spot and short-term forward deals. However, the apex bank did not specify the maximum amount of dollars it will sell. Authorised dealers’ accounts with the central bank will be debited in full for the naira equivalent of the dollar bid amount on a spot basis,” the bank said. It could be recalled that in May; the CBN published a list of 36 items for which importers can source foreign exchange (Forex) from the market excluding operators in the airline, oil, and agro-based industries.This fresh Forex window is to grant them some reprieve following several stakeholder engagement and meetings.
Meanwhile, the International Air Transport Association (IATA)’s Area Manager, South West Africa, Samson Fatokun, said foreign airlines have found it increasingly difficult to repatriate their earnings due to the dollar shortage in the country brought on by the low earnings from crude oil sales.
Fatokun, however, explained that IATA had been engaging government through the Ministry of Transportation, CBN and the Vice President’s office.
“We are engaging government through the ministry, CBN and Vice President and government is giving the Aviation Ministry the best possible attention the sector deserves. We are addressing the issues and government is giving us support,” Fatokun had said. CBN has been selling dollars since February in an effort to improve liquidity and narrow the spread between the official and black market exchange rates for the naira. Close to $5 billion has been sold, according to analysts.