Naira on Wednesday fell by 28.96 percent against the dollar, the lowest ever, at the official market after Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, officially floated its currency.
After trading on Wednesday, the dollar was quoted at N664.04 as against N471.67 quoted on Tuesday at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) forex window, Nigeria’s official foreign exchange (FX) market.
The local currency on Wednesday strengthened at the parallel market, gaining 0.65 percent against the dollar, which traded at N765 on Wednesday compared to N760 on Tuesday.
Nigeria has officially floated its naira currency after years of sticking with a hard peg that spooked investors and drained dollars from the economy.
The development means buyers and sellers of foreign currency in the official FX market are now allowed to quote rates they find comfortable in the FX market, as against previous practice where rates were dictated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Olisa Agbakoba, Nigerian human rights activist, maritime lawyer and former President of Nigerian Bar Association, said naira float is great news. “For me, removing all the checkpoints of CBN dollar control and the street dollar control is brilliant news,” he said.
He said if the FX flows more efficiently there would be a slight rise in inflation and that Nigerians should prepare for difficult moments in the next two to three months after which there will be normalcy.