Naira’s Alarming Decline to N950/USD Amplifies Forex Scarcity Concerns
The Nigerian naira experienced a significant decline against the US dollar on Wednesday, marking a continuation of its recent depreciation trend. The parallel market saw the naira closing at 950/$, following a previous close of 930/$ on Tuesday, according to reports from Bureau de Change operators interviewed by The PUNCH.
Throughout the day, these operators reported transactions occurring between 935/$ and 950/$, highlighting the persistent challenges facing the Nigerian currency. Meanwhile, at the Investor & Exporter forex window, official figures from the FMDQ indicated a closing rate of 758.12/$ on Wednesday, up from 742.10/$ the day before.
Yusuf Kareem, a BDC operator, expressed concern about the naira’s scarcity and its fluctuating value, stating that trading began at 930/$ in the morning and concluded at 950/$ by evening. This volatility has left market participants uncertain about the currency’s future performance.
Sanusi Ibrahim, another BDC operator, echoed similar sentiments, emphasizing that the naira was bought and sold at rates ranging between 935/$ and 950/$ on the same day, adding an air of uncertainty regarding what might transpire in the currency market in the days ahead.
In an effort to address these challenges and achieve exchange rate convergence, the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) recently urged the Central Bank of Nigeria to grant BDC operators digital autonomy. Dr. Aminu Gwadabe, the President of ABCON, called on the apex bank to provide a no objection approval for BDCs to fully embrace digital operations in all their dealings. This strategic shift, according to Dr. Gwadabe, would not only foster rate convergence but also mitigate market volatility, ultimately fostering economic growth. ABCON has a history of leading its members to achieve rate convergence in previous years, making this appeal a significant development in the ongoing efforts to stabilize the Nigerian currency.