Nigeria under pressure to borrow money to strengthen the Naira..

    International Monetary Fund has said the naira is currently under pressure and Nigeria is free to seek loan from the Fund to stabilise the currency if it considers a good option. The Washington-based lender however noted that recent exchange reforms and other steps taken by the Nigerian authorities were in order.


    It also expressed support for Olayemi Cardoso-led Central Bank of Nigeria’s last week’s decision to halt the eight-year foreign exchange ban on cement, rice, poultry products and 40 other items. The past administration of the CBN had imposed the forex ban in 2015. the IMF said, ‘Nigeria is facing high inflation of 26 percent year-on-year in August and pressure on the naira.

    In June, the authorities unified the different official exchange rate windows. This was a welcome step as will help to strengthen the functioning of the foreign exchange market. We also welcome the CBN’s recent decision to lift the ban on the 43 items previously restricted from accessing foreign exchange from the official window.

    This is a positive step in the direction of a shift to a market-determined exchange rate regime.” “the authorities should urgently tighten monetary policy and take measures to ensure markets maintain full confidence in the Central Bank of Nigeria.

    Tightening monetary policy will have to include raising the Monetary Policy Rate and mopping up excess naira liquidity. Market confidence will benefit from more clarity on Central Bank of Nigeria dollar obligations.” On the possibility of a currency support loan, it said, “As every member country of the IMF, Nigeria can seek IMF financing if they see this as helpful to address external imbalances.

    The Nigerian authorities have not approached the IMF with a request for financing.” the IMF has said it is confident the new CBN governor, Cardoso, and the new Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Wale Edun, have the capacity to take right decisions to boost the fortunes of the economy.

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