NairaThe naira on Tuesday gained further grounds against the US dollar as it closed at N457 at the black market, after the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) sold a total of $195 million in forwards.

BusinessDay prices checks show that naira traded at N457 per dollar at the Lagos international airport and Apapa respectively. At the Festac area of Lagos, the foreign currency closed at N455 per dollar at the unregulated parallel market on Tuesday.

As anticipated last weekend, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Tuesday, March 14, 2017, sustained the supply of foreign exchange to the market by concluding arrangement to release the sum of $195 million (One Hundred and Ninety Five Million Dollars) comprising of $150 million for the wholesale auction and $45 million in the invisible segment for such items as medical fees, tuition fees, Personal Travel Allowance (PTA) and Business Travel Allowance (BTA).

Confirming the foreign exchange sales, Isaac Okorafor,CBN acting director, Corporate Communications, said that the Bank acted promptly and proactively in line with its promise to keep the market liquid enough to meet the needs of genuine requests.

Okorafor also alluded to the fact that deposit money banks (DMBs) were becoming saturated with foreign exchange as most of them are now able to meet demands for foreign exchange within the stipulated time frame. “As you can see, all the pent-up demand for invisibles have been met to the extent that banks are urging customers to come and obtain forex”, he said.

He reiterated the Bank’s determination to continue to fund the importation of raw materials and plant and machinery for manufacturing, agriculture, and other eligible items.

He also assured that the Bank remained resolute in ensuring stability in the forex market by keeping an eagle eye on the activities of authorised dealers in order to ensure sharp practices are reduced barest minimum.

However, the foreign currency was quoted at N306.25k, which was 0.08 percent lower than N306.00k traded the previous day at the inter-bank spot foreign exchange.⁠⁠⁠⁠

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