By Mukwuzi Joseph
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has banned the sale of foreign exchange (FX) to Bureau De Change (BDCs) operators in the country.
The CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, announced this at the end of themonetary policy committee meeting in Abuja on Tuesday July 27. According to Emefiele, the apex bank receives about 5,000 applications every month for BDC registration and that these BDCs have become a conduit for illegal financial flows working with corrupt people to conduct money laundering in the country.
“They have turned themselves away from their objectives. They are now agents that facilitate graft and corruption in the country. We cannot continue with the bad practices that are happening at the BDC market.”he said
Emefiele added that there is evidence of prevailing ownership of several BDCs by the same promoters to procure multiple FX from the central bank.
“Several international organizations, embassies patronize BDC through illegal forex dealers to fund their institutions. We will deal ruthlessly with Nigerian banks that deal with illegal BDCs and we will report foreign organizations patronizing them.”he said
Emefiele announced that the CBN will henceforth channel weekly allocations of dollar sales to commercial banks to meet legitimate FX demands and that banks will now be able to sell forex to every customer.