Speculators are responsible for the sale of dollars above the exchange rate approved by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the rising pressure on the naira against the dollar, the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) said yesterday.
ABCON President Aminu Gwadabe, who made the claim in Lagos, advised foreign exchange users to buy dollars from CBN-licensed Bureaux De Change (BDCs) at the approved rate and refrain from patronising forex speculators.
The naira, which exchanged at N495/$ at the parallel market remains at N410.25/$ at the official market following last week’ devaluation of the local currency by the CBN.
According to Gwadabe, forex speculators capitalise on the state of the foreign exchange market and the naira to sell dollars above CBN approved margin.
According to him, parallel market activities have for years become major drivers of the exchange rates and control over such transactions have become burdensome.
He said only CBN-licenced BDCs operate within regulatory guidelines and therefore should be patronised.
Gwadabe said the licenced BDCs, being regulatory-complaint and operating within international best practices, cannot sell the dollar to end-users above the N2 per dollar margin set by the CBN to protect the naira against foreign exchange speculators and ensure exchange rate stability.
The ABCON Executive Council said ABCON has continued to ensure that BDCs file their reports as and at when due, conduct Know Your Customer (KYC) and due diligence reports as required by the apex bank.
ABCON explained that while BDCs are licensed to offer retail across the counter of foreign exchange transactions, they play critical roles in the economy and have contributed to the economic development of the country like ensuring order and confidence in the forex market, providing data for monetary policy, channels for CBN Intervention in Retail forex market and creation of over 15,000 jobs among others.
The group assured members of the public of its commitment to conduct retail forex transactions as defined and regulated by the apex bank.