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Non-Oil Exports: CBN Announces Programme For Repatriation Of $200bn In Three-Five Years

The Central Bank Governor Godwin Emefiele on Thursday announced a programme that seeks to repatriate $200bn exclusively from non-oil exports over the next three to five years.

The RT200 FX Programme, according Mr. Emefiele, targets increased exports, value addition and improved foreign exchange for the government.

He made the announcement while briefing on the outcome of the Banker’s Committee meeting in Abuja.

Another segment of the plan includes a non-oil rebate scheme, a central warehousing scheme as well as a concessionary and long term funding for non-oil exporters.

“After careful consideration of the available options and wide consultation with the Banking Community, the CBN is, effective immediately, announcing the Bankers’ Committee ‘RT200 FX Programme’, which stands for the ‘Race to US$200 billion in FX Repatriation,’” Mr Emefiele said.

“The RT200 FX Programme is a set of policies, plans and programmes for non-oil exports that will enable us attain our lofty yet attainable goal of US$200 billion in FX repatriation, exclusively from non-oil exports, over the next 3-5 years.”

Mr Emefiele noted that while the goal itself may appear unattainable to some, he was resolute that it could be achieved.

“Many countries that are much less endowed than Nigeria are doing it,” he said.

“Consider for example that agriculture exports alone from the Netherlands was about US$120 billion last year. Yet, Netherlands has a land mass of about 42,000 square kilometers, which is much smaller that the land mass of Niger State alone, at over 76,000 square kilometers.”

He added that the programme is not intended to be a silver bullet to all the nation’s problems in the export sector.

“Rather it is a first step meant to ensure that the CBN is able to carry out its mandate in an effective and efficient manner, which guarantees preservation of our scarce commonwealth, and the stability of our national currency, the Naira,” he said.

“It is only by boosting productive and earning capacity of this economy that we can truly preserve the long-term value of our currency, as well as the stability of our exchange rate.”

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) also said that they will put Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) on notice that it will stop selling forex to them by the end of 2022.

CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele made this known in Abuja on Thursday at the end of the Bankers’ Committee Meeting where he also introduced the RT200 Programme.

Emefiele said the time had come for the banks to go out there and source for forex by funding entrepreneurs with ideas.

The CBN, Emefiele said, will support the banks by granting rebates and other support until the banks find their feet in sourcing their forex by themselves.

Emefiele also disclosed that the apex bank’s policies and measures have led to a significant improvement in diaspora inflow from an average of US$6 million per week in December 2020 to an average of over US$100 million per week by January 2022.

The CBN, he said, would be reviewing these intervention programmes going forward to ensure that they continue to achieve the desired results.

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