FG Moves Against Forex Speculators, Black Market Operators as Naira Hits N1,900 Per Dollar

FG Moves Against Forex Speculators, Black Market Operators as Naira Hits N1,900 Per Dollar

  • The Federal Government of Nigeria has deployed security agencies against foreign exchange speculators
  • The government said the move is to curb their activities, which are responsible for the abysmal performance of the naira
  • The naira hit its lowest level at the parallel market on Wednesday, February 21, 2024, trading at N1,900 per dollar

Pascal Oparada has over a decade of experience covering Tech, Energy, Stocks, Investments, and Economy.

On Tuesday, February 20, 2023, the Nigerian government declared war on currency speculation to curtail the foreign exchange crisis in Nigeria.

The government issued the order to the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to join forces to address the challenges to Nigeria's economy caused by speculative Forex activities.

Currency speculators, FX market, Tinubu
The Federal government declares war on Forex speculators Credit: Bloomberg/Contributors
Source: Getty Images

FG sets security agencies on speculators

Also, the Nigerian government deployed the Nigeria Police, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) to tackle the challenges.

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The renewed measures came as the naira crashed at the parallel market to a record low of N1,900 per dollar, a loss of N335 in a week, compared to the N1,495 to a dollar it closed on Friday, February 16, 2024, Legit.ng reported.

Tinubu says Nigeria is expecting $10 billion

However, President Bola Tinubu hinted at plans by the Nigerian government to raise about $10 billion to increase Forex liquidity, an essential ingredient to stabilising the naira and growing the economy.

The Nigerian currency recorded the highest decline in the parallel market after closing at N1,900. In contrast, the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange (NAFEM) market closed at N1,551.24 to a dollar, indicating an appreciation of N47.3.

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Tinubu, who spoke at the inaugural Public Wealth Management Conference, organised by the Ministry of Finance Incorporate (MOFI), said his government would create millions of jobs by unlocking value in Nigeria's public assets to optimise and double the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

At the event, the Vice President, Kashim Shetima, represented Tinubu, where he identified consolidating and maximising returns on government-owned assets worth trillions of naira as a low-hanging fruit.

Per the president, with economic revitalisation as its primary priority, the Nigerian government targets raising about $10 billion to increase Forex liquidity to stabilise the naira.

ThisDay reports that Tinubu said years of mismanagement and underutilisation have eroded the country's assets, which are spread across Nigeria and outside its borders, leading to loss of revenue and hindering economic growth.

EFCC arrests BDC operators

The president assured that the newly recalibrated MOFI was designed to act as a custodian and active manager of public assets and would become a priority.

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In a previous report, Legit.ng, The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) raided the well-known Bureau De Change (BDC) market in Zone 4, Abuja, targeting those behind the poor performance of the naira.

According to reports, EFCC stormed the market complex and used guns to scatter BDC operations, ending their trading.

The report stated that this may be related to the urgent need for the Bola Tinubu-led administration to employ every tactic to stabilise the naira, which has plummeted to historically low levels.

The search and subsequent arrest were confirmed by Dayyabu Mistila, a Bureau de Change operator, according to The Punch.

Mistila said that the operatives claimed that the reason for the raid was the increasing value of the dollar and other currencies relative to the naira on the foreign exchange market.

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Legit.ng reported that the administration of President Bola Tinubu has announced plans to raise at least $10 billion to increase foreign exchange (FX) liquidity and stabilise the Naira.

This was made known at the inauguration of the public wealth management conference organised by the Ministry of Finance Incorporated (MOFI) on Tuesday, February 20, in Abuja.

Tinubu, Vice President Kashim Shettima, who represented at the event, said there was a need to identify, consolidate, and maximise returns on government-owned assets worth trillions of Naira, Punch reports.

Source: Legit.ng

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