DESPITE GOVERNMENT PROMISES, OFFICIAL DOLLAR RATE HITS 1,000 NAIRA

Naira and Dollar

Naira and Dollar

Despite recent moves by the Central Bank of Nigeria to strengthen the foreign exchange market, the naira closed trading on the Investor & Exporter forex window on Thursday at N996.75/$.

This is a 13.95 per cent decline from the N874.71/$ it closed trading on Wednesday. So far, the naira has lost 27.75 per cent of its value since opening the week at N780.23/$ according to details on FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange.

Since firming up against the dollar last week, after news that the apex bank was clearing some of its backlog broke, the naira has been on a steady decline in both the official and parallel markets.

So far, the naira has lost about 40 per cent of its value in 2023, earning the tag of one of the worst performing African currencies from the World Bank.

In the parallel market, the currency has lost value too, falling from N950/$ as of Friday to close to N1,140/$ as of Thursday according to Bureaux De Change operators who spoke to The PUNCH. This represents a 20 per cent decline.

A trader who only gave his name as Kadri said, “Dollar is N1,100 if you want to sell. It is N1,140 if you want to buy.” Another trader, Awolu, stated that he would buy the dollar at N1,100 from our correspondent.

He said, “Dollar is N1,100 if you want to sell to me.”

Earlier in the week, the President of the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria, Aminu Gwadabe, told The PUNCH that the dollar was gaining against the naira because people who had bought it at a higher price were resisting its fall.

He said, “Speculators are always looking at elements of sustainability. Once they sense that it (the injection) is not continuous, they begin to react. They begin to react. It is the reaction of the market we are witnessing. Also, there is resistance. There are people that bought at a higher price that this does not favour. People are not willing to take further losses.”

Concerned with the fall of the currency, the presidency recently stated that it is planning policies to strengthen the local currency.

A Special Adviser to the President on Economic Matters, Dr Tope Fasua, who was representing the Vice President, Kashim Shettima, at an event, said: “For those who are speculating and praying and wishing that the currency would become nonsense, I believe that the central bank is rolling out the policies and the government that I serve, led by the President, will shock some of them.”

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