The Central Bank of Nigeria has granted a two- week market holidays to the Bureaux De Change operators.
This followed a request by the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria to the CBN for the regulator to grant it market holidays given the ongoing challenges faced in local and global economies due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
In a notice to the BDC operators and directors, the President, ABCON, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, said the CBN’s approval meant that sales of foreign exchange to the BDCs were now suspended till further notice.
Gwadabe also advised the public not to go into panic buying, hoarding and patronising the street traders as the CBN had enough reserves to sustain supplies when the BDCs returned to operations.
A statement said the CBN had also acknowledged the contributions of the BDCs in promoting stable exchange rate in recent months, despite challenging circumstances facing the forex market due to drop in crude oil prices.
It stated, “This is to urgently bring to the notice of our members nationwide that following our letter of recommendations to the CBN to grant us market holidays on our bidding days as a proactive and preventive measure on the scourge of the novel COVID-19 epidemic and the ban on all air/land travels, the CBN has granted our request, effective Friday March 27, 2020
“There shall be no market days henceforth for a tentative period of two weeks.”
Gwadabe advised members to observe strict guidelines on the preventive measures on the dangers of the COVID-19, by wearing their mask, gloves, and frequent washing of hands.
He stated, “We also want to advise members to strictly comply with their regulatory obligations on their daily operations.
“If you are trading, be cautious not to fall into the hand of security agencies. Don’t be involved in giving black market rates; street trading as doing so might create regulatory breach.”
Gwadabe said that the CBN/Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit were tracking large movements of funds within the financial sector and the need to be cautious.
“Once again accept our continuous assurances on serving you better as we continue to ponder on lasting solutions to the growing challenges facing our operations among them crowd management, expansion of scope of our business, lesser penalties, and automation.