The Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) efforts towards actualising $200 billion in Foreign Exchange (FX) repatriation from non-oil exports over the next five years have been given a major boost with a recently held workshop for exporters and investors in Akure, Ondo State.
Hosted by leading financial institution, Fidelity Bank Plc, the workshop tagged, Harnessing Export Business Opportunities, CBN RT200 FX Policy: Policy Sensitisation, Emerging Sector Issues & Implications to Business, had in attendance representatives from key stakeholders in the Nigerian financial services and export industries. Also in attendance were representatives from the Nigerian Export and Import Bank (NEXIM), the Cocoa Exporters Association of Nigeria, the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) amongst others.
Speaking on the need for strategic planning in the non-oil sector, Isaiah Ndukwe, head of Export and Agric Businesses at Fidelity Bank, said the bank is well positioned to advance the CBN policy thrust to reduce the country’s dependence on oil revenue.
He stated that the bank is committed to growing the export business across key sectors of the economy by providing support to exporters. Isaiah emphasized that the new policy will not only reshape exporters’ mindsets, but will also infuse value addition on their commodities, allowing them to earn more forex.
Launched on February 10, 2022 by the apex bank as part of measures to reduce the increasing demand for foreign currency by importers, the RT200 FX Programme has been designed to reduce the excessive pressure on the exchange rate.
With the implementation of this policy, the CBN has stated that the supply of foreign currency to commercial banks will cease by the end of 2022, while investors will be able to generate forex through the RT200 FX Program template that has been designed to strengthen commodity exports.
Commending Fidelity Bank on the sensitization series, Babatunde Fatimiro, an attendee at the event and cocoa farmer, said, “In Ondo State today, cocoa has a dedicated agency; this is unprecedented in Nigeria. If you consider the potential and inclusive advantage as well as economic impact of cocoa production on the Nigerian economy, I have no doubt that cocoa will one day overtake crude oil in terms of economic importance in Nigeria.”
“It is initiatives like this workshop hosted by Fidelity Bank that would help us actualize this quickly and I encourage them not to rest on their oars as they drive to help diversify the economy.”
It would be recalled that Fidelity Bank hosted the first edition of the workshop in Kano State on 21 February 2022 to sensitise entrepreneurs in the region on the implementation and opportunities in the CBN RT200 FX Policy.
Fidelity Bank is a full-fledged commercial bank operating in Nigeria with over six million customers who are serviced across its 250 business offices and digital banking channels.