Business & Economy - News - February 11, 2022

FOREX Crisis: CBN introduces RT200 FX” to help repatriate $200bn

By Bassey Udo

To help earn more stable and sustainable inflows of foreign exchange, the CBN announced the immediate introduction of the Bankers’ Committee “RT200 FX Programme”, which stands for the “Race to $200 billion in FX Repatriation”.

The CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, who announced the introduction of the new RT200 FX Programme said it incolves a set of policies, plans and programmes for non-oil exports to help repatriate about $200 billion in FX repatriation, exclusively from non-oil exports, over the next 3-5 years.

Emefiele said the RT200 Programme would be anchored on value-adding exports facility, non-oil commodities expansion facility, non-oil FX rebate scheme, dedicated non-oil export rermina, and biannual non-oil export summit.

The Value-Adding Export Facility, the CBN governor explained, would provide concessionary and long-term funding for businesspeople interested in expanding existing plants or building brand new ones for the sole purpose of adding significant value to the country’s non-oil commodities before exports.

The export of primary unprocessed commodities, he noted, has not yielded much in foreign exchange to the country.

For instance, out of about 770,000 metric tonnes of Sesame, Cashew and Cocoa produced by Nigeria, only about 12,000 metric tonnes are consumed locally, with 758,000 metric tonnes exported annually, from which only 16.8 percent is processed.

From the rest exported as raw sesame, raw cashew, and raw cocoa, Emefiele said Nigerian farmers earn only a small part of the value chain in these products.

The Value-Adding Export Facility, Emefiele said would help recoup some of these foreign exchange the country has been losing from unprocessed commodities.

He said the facility would also accommodate the demand of the youth population already adding value in using e-commerce and online
methods for the provision and export of software, financial services, financial technology, Nigerian fashion and attires, and the likes.

The Non-Oil Commodities Expansion Facility, he said, would qsignificantly boost local production of exportable commodities by providing financing for the expansion and establishment of new factories.

The Non-Oil FX Rebate Scheme, he said, is a special local currency rebate scheme for non-oil exporters of semi finished and finished produce who show verifiable evidence of exports proceeds repatriation sold directly into the import & export window to boost liquidity in the market.

Considering the perennial problems of port congestion often cited by exporters as a major impediment to improved operations and foreign exchange earnings, the CBN said the dedicated Non-Oil Export Terminal under the RT200 Programme, would help resolve the problem and save the country’s estimated loss of about $14.2 billion annually due to ports congestion.

That is why today we are announcing the introduction
On the Biannual Non-Oil Export Summit, the CBN governor stressed the need for a forum for regular consultations with non-oil exporters on the issues, challenges and opportunities in this segment of the economy.

He said the first of such fora would be organized during the first week of April 2022, to bring together all the relevant stakeholders in the export business, including bankers, customs officials, the Nigerian Ports Authority, the Nigerian Export Promotion Council, clearing agents, cargo airlines, shipping lines, logistics companies, insurance practitioners, etc.

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