CBN auctions $100m to SMEs via Special Forex Window

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Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday, made spot sales totaling $100 million to interested Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) through its newly opened Special Window for small scale importers. The SMEs are to use the funds for the importation of critical and eligible finished and semi-finished goods.

The CBN also released its results of 7 – 30 days forwards wholesale of $100 million, even as authorised dealers subscribed fully to the $100 million offered by the CBN at the forex auction in the interbank wholesale window on Monday.

CBN’s Acting Director, Corporate Communications, Isaac Okorafor, made this known in a chat with newsmen. He said the new window for SMEs provides small scale importers an avenue to source forex to boost their respective businesses through the importation of eligible finished and semi-finished items.

He added that no SME will be allowed to transact more than $20,000 per quarter.

Some authoritative sources at the CBN have also hinted that in an attempt to boost forex supply, the CBN will soon begin spot forex auction sales, and also open a special window for investors to trade freely for certain eligible transactions, particularly dividends and investment remittances .

There have been concerns raised over the ability of the apex bank to sustain the current rate of liquidity in the market. Some experts have, however, pointed out that going by the current level of reserves, the accretion from oil revenues and the subdued level of demand, the CBN has the capacity to sustain supply even if it has to keep doing so for the next three months.

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