CBN Currency Management Policy Lapses Taking A Toll On Businesses, Nigerians – LCCI

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The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to explain to the public the actual reasons for the scarcity of the new Naira notes in the system.
In a statement, the Director General of the Chamber, Dr. Chinyere Almona stressed the need for the apex bank to strengthen its policy implementation capacity as this, according to her, was the minimum expectation in the face of a currency crisis in which the nation has been thrown into.
She said businesses in the country are suffering the effect of the currency policy lapses. Regarding the deadline extension for phasing out old notes, adding that scarcity of the new Naira notes persists has eroded the expected benefits.
The full statement reads:
With the launch of the redesigned Naira notes last December, expectations were high for the smooth transition to the use of the new notes for business transactions across the country.
We regret to note that expectations have been dashed, business deals impeded, and loss of time and value experienced by many.
The Central Bank needs to enlighten the public on grey areas about the scarcity of the new Naira notes in addition to strengthening its policy implementation capacity. This is the minimum expectation in the face of a currency crisis in which we find ourselves.
The new Naira redesign has triggered varied reactions and feedback that suggest that related issues like the phasing of old currency notes, withdrawal limit, and the scarcity of new notes may have started to impact businesses and social livelihood beyond intentions.
While banks have endeavoured to meet the currency demands of their customers through Automatic Teller Machines, and electronic transfers, the scarcity of the Naira has rendered their efforts ineffective.
Businesses are suffering the consequences of the CBN currency management policy lapses. Regarding the deadline extension for phasing out old notes, the Chamber does not see any value in this if the scarcity of the new Naira notes persists.
While we support the drive toward a cashless economy, redesigning the Naira and phasing out old currency notes could have been better planned and implemented with no hardship for businesses and individuals.
Dr. Chinyere Almona, Director-General Lagos Chamber Of Commerce Industry.