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Forex crisis: Naira plunges to 1,025/$, job losses, factory shutdown loom

•Forex crisis hinders raw materials procurement, causes financial problem – NECA

•SMEs decry impending shutdown, Reps probe airlines, schools demanding dollars

The naira fell further on Tuesday as it exchanged for the dollar at the parallel market between 1,005/$ and 1,025/$.

Owners of small-scale enterprises, Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association, and manufacturers, who spoke to The PUNCH, expressed concern about the falling value of the naira, warning that it would lead to the shutting down of factories and attendant job losses.

The naira has maintained a downward trend since the Central Bank of Nigeria allowed a free float of the national currency against the dollar and other global currencies in June.

This decline has further led to manufacturers struggling to get raw materials, with more companies planning to sack more workers or shut down.

With the declining naira value, manufacturers are faced with cutting production, jobs, and raw material imports.

Naira hits 1,025/$

Bureau de Change operators who spoke to The PUNCH said the naira exchanged for the dollar at the parallel market between 1,005/$ and 1,025/$ on Tuesday.

A BDC operator in Lagos, Yusuf Kareem, who spoke to one of our correspondents, stated, “We bought for N1,005/$ and sold for 1,025/$ on Tuesday. The money is still scarce. The value of the naira has been falling.”

Another BDC operator in Lagos, Musa Yunus, said, “The naira was traded at 980/$ two weeks ago, but today, it is 1,020/$. We don’t know what will happen tomorrow because it has not been coming down.”

Another BDC operator in Lagos, who simply identified himself as Idris, said, “I am not sure you can buy up to $1,000 from me now because it is not available. We buy at the rate of 1,000/$, but I sell at 1,015/$.”

Babangida, another BDC in Lagos, said, “I sell for N1,010 per $ and buy at the rate of N1,000.”

But the Assistant Provost, Association of Bureau De Change Operators, Zone 4, Wuse, Abuja, Muhammed Nera, said the rate closed at 1,015/$ on Tuesday.

He stated, “As of the close of business, we were buying at N1,010/$ and selling at N1,015/$. But I can’t say what the rates would be tomorrow (today).”

On the Investors & Exporters forex window, official figures from the FMDQ showed that the naira fell slightly and closed at 765.83/$ on Tuesday from 765.02/$ on Monday. The official market recorded a total turnover of $60.30m.

PUNCH

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