Emefiele: Nigeria no longer earning FX from crude oil

Our reporter/ Nigeria’s Central Bank governor, Godwin Emefiele, says the country’s external reserves no longer come from selling crude oil.

Emefiele, who made the disclosure at the 57th annual bankers’ lecture organised by the Chartered Institute of bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) in Lagos on Saturday, explained that
due to the struggle in naira as well as the increase in the demand for forex, there has been a huge decline in foreign reserves.

According to him, Nigeria’s foreign reserves receipts declined from US$3.0 billion monthly to zero in 2022.

He, however, expressed optimism that the short-term outlook of the Nigerian economy remained sound, adding that diversity was important.

“The official foreign exchange receipt from crude oil sales into our official reserves has dried up steadily from above $3.0 billion monthly in 2014 to an absolute zero dollars today,” he said.

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Emefiele further stated that the bulk of the money in Nigeria’s foreign reserves comes from the export of gas and oil to other nations. But increasing instances of crude oil theft have hurt Nigeria’s ability to export enough crude oil. Consequently, its foreign exchange reserves are falling,” he added.

“Nigeria’s external reserves fell to $37.17 billion as of November 15, 2022, data from the CBN confirms. This is the lowest level of the external reserves this year and the lowest level since September 30, 2021, when the country faced a barrage of currency depreciation.”

On the naira redesign policy, Emefiele said the apex bank’s move to redesign the three different denominations of Nigerian banknotes had a good reason.

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He also said inflation rate will remain elevated and above the 12.5 percent growth-aiding threshold.

“We will maintain the current tight monetary policy stance in the near term, especially in view of rising inflation expectations and exchange market pressures,” he added.

 

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