Manufacturer’s Association of Nigeria (MAN) has thrown its weight behind the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) over its recent policy to withdraw foreign exchange transactions from Bureaux De Changes (BDCs) in the country, describing the new policy as most welcome even if belated, just as he said that the country’s economy would be better for it.
President of the association, Engr Mansur Ahmed, gave the endorsement in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Kwara and Kogi states branch of the association.
The MAN boss lamented the effect of activities of the BDCs on the manufacturing sector, noting that CBN policy would temporarily hike exchange rate, but quickly asserted that country’s economy would, in the long run, be better for it.
Ahmed, who revealed that CBN had in the last few months been making efforts to control the flow of foreign exchange for the sector to get more Forex, pointedly declared that foreign is not a commodity that should be taken to the market and traded.
According to him, its availability is intended to allow manufacturers and service providers to bring in the necessary materials and equipment required in order to produce those goods and services at affordable prices.
“In the last few months, there have been efforts by the Central Bank to control the flow of foreign exchange for us to get more Forex in the manufacturing sector.
“The decision by the CBN to withdraw supply of foreign exchange from the Bureaux De Change is one that the manufacturing sector is fully in support of.
“Foreign exchange is not a commodity that should be taken to the market and traded. Its availability is intended to allow those that are producing goods and services to bring in the necessary materials and equipment required in order to produce those goods and services at affordable prices,” he said.
“In this regard, I affirm the support of the MAN for this policy as well as others polices in the infrastructure sector executed by the FG. The art of getting foreign exchange in the market, to me does not make sense.
“And yet we know that this process has indeed made a huge sum of forex into the BDCs. We do not see how that will help the economy,” he added.
Speaking further, MAN president said it was certain that foreign exchange was made available to our manufacturing companies, more young people would be employed as existing companies would operate at higher capacity, while more industries would be created with availability of lot of needed raw materials.
“Certainly, if the foreign exchange is made available to our manufacturing companies, more young people will be employed and the companies will operate at higher capacity and more industries will be created while a lot of the raw materials needed will be readily available.
“So if you have to sell Forex to traders in the market as if it is a commodity, you are denying the manufacturing sector these vital resources. The law of Forex as it was being done is not sustainable,” Ahmed said.
Earlier, Kwara and Kogi states chairman of MAN, Bioku Rahmon, urged the Federal Government to apply quick remedies to support the country’s industrialists.
Rahmon bemoaned the high and fast-rising Nigeria’s debt profile and sundry other challenging plaguing the manufacturing sector.
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