President Bola Tinubu has offered reassurance to both Nigerians and investors regarding ongoing efforts to bolster the country’s foreign exchange liquidity. At the 29th Nigerian Economic Summit in Abuja, Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Wale Edun, shared that the nation anticipates approximately $10 billion in inflows in the near future.
This substantial injection is expected to help clear foreign exchange backlogs and contribute to naira stabilization, a move welcomed by the business community and market participants.
President Tinubu addressed the challenges faced by businesses within the financial markets, emphasizing his administration’s commitment to enhancing governance through the establishment of a performance-driven public and civil service culture. He also outlined eight key priorities for his administration, including poverty reduction, food security, economic growth, access to capital, inclusivity, security, fairness, rule of law, and anti-corruption measures.
Furthermore, President Tinubu urged the private sector to actively support his vision for a prosperous Nigeria, encouraging them to contribute their ideas, leadership, capital, and collective efforts in building a future filled with hope. He emphasized the importance of a collaborative relationship between the government and the private sector, pointing to successful public-private partnerships in Lagos State as examples.
The President promised that his government would honor all foreign exchange future contracts, aiming to provide the necessary foreign exchange to rejuvenate the economy.
In addressing the forex backlog issue, the Federal Government is also planning to automate transactions in the entire foreign exchange market, with a focus on curbing arbitrage and penalizing speculators to stabilize the naira.
The Chairman of the National Economic Summit Group, Mr. Niyi Yusuf, highlighted the urgency for a macroeconomic stabilization program, a robust national security effort, and job creation plans to address the country’s pressing challenges. These measures are essential for combating syndicated and organized crime around crude oil and solid minerals and promoting a “Made in Nigeria” agenda.
To further enhance the official currency market, the Federal Government is considering broadening participation to include legitimate entities such as bureaux de change and financial technology companies.
Despite the government’s efforts and promises, the naira continued to face devaluation, both in the parallel and official markets. Bureau de Change Operators reported that the naira was purchased at 1,210/$ and sold at 1,235/$ on Monday, highlighting the ongoing challenges in the foreign exchange market.
Economists emphasized the importance of addressing the root causes of the naira’s depreciation, including the need for a more organized and balanced trade and payment system. They called for enhanced supply of dollars, curbing speculation, addressing oil leakages, and engaging with stakeholders to restore confidence and stability in the foreign exchange market.