CBN eyes $2bn monthly Diaspora remittances to boost economy

Posted by News Express | 4 December 2020 | 619 times

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• Godwin Emefiele

Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, on Thursday said that the apex bank was eyeing close to $2 billion monthly of diaspora remittances thus prompting his unveiling of new policy measures in the nation’s remittances programme.

This was as commercial banks have been ordered to pay recipients of offshore remittances in United States dollars and not naira equivalent with effect from December 4. The beneficiaries can either receive the dollars by cash across the bank’s counter or through their domiciliary accounts.

Speaking at a media briefing in Abuja on Thursday, Emefiele said that the new measures sprang from internal review of the operations of International Money Transfer Operators (IMTO) in the country and the potential impact improved flows on the economy.

He said: “I’m aware from the data available that for instance Pakistan even in the midst of COVID-19 received $2 billion monthly from flows from Pakistani in the Diaspora. This is a country that I will say by geography, and demographic is about the same with Nigeria.

“So, we are hereby saying that if Nigeria is able to receive even if it is just $1 billion monthly or moving close to $2 billion monthly, I’m so certain you all know what will happen to exchange rate in Nigeria.

“Secondly, I am so certain that after sometime, the deposit money banks will not have any need to begin to call on the CBN to provide dollars to fund their commercial operations; so that is why we are saying that we want to aggressively take on this and see how this will help our economy”.

On the possibility of the new policy promoting money laundering, Emefiele dismissed such insinuations, explaining that offshore IMTO operators like Western Union, MoneyGram and RIA are properly licensed and regulated.

“I know for certain that institutions where or countries where they are domiciled abroad would not allow money laundry practices or remittance of funds in those countries into our contry to be associated with money laundry. On our part here, most of those will be receiving those funds, they come with some form of identity card that are verifiable and traceable”. (Daily Sun)




Source: News Express

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